Assessing PIP

The DWP has announced that two firms will be contracted to deliver the new Personal Independence Payment (PIP) assessment. They are Atos, who will cover Scotland, North East, North West, London and Southern England, and Capita, who will cover Wales and Central England. Atos’s appointment will be particularly controversial, but it is difficult to see who else has the capacity to deliver what the government is asking for.

Computer Weekly is not part of my usual reading, but their coverage has been exemplary: click here to find the articles. From them I read that the ATOS contract is worth £400m, and the Capita contract £140m; there is another contract still to be decided.

From the 2012 Budget documents, we know that what the government hopes to save from reforming DLA is zero this year, £355m in 2013-14, £1055m in 2014-15 and £1415m in 2015-16. In other words, the contracts are larger than the early savings. I suggested in this blog on April 20th that the proposed reforms were not likely to deliver the savings that the government wanted. If I’m right about that, this process could end up costing the government a large part of what it saves.

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