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Contract awarded for Personal Independence Payment assessment services

A competition to secure a provider for the Personal Independence Payment assessment process has now been completed for Northern Ireland.
Wednesday, 21 November 2012

The contract has been awarded to Capita Business Services Ltd.

The Welfare Reform Bill for Northern Ireland proposed that Personal Independence Payment (PIP) will replace Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for working age customers, aged 16 to 64, from June 2013. The Bill is making its way through the Northern Ireland Assembly and is currently at Committee stage.

A core feature of PIP will be the introduction of an assessment process, which will look at an individual’s particular needs and which will be conducted by a trained, independent health professional.

In most cases, the assessment process will involve a face to face consultation with a health professional. This will give customers the opportunity to explain how their health condition or impairment affects them on a daily basis.

Notes to Editors:

  1. In April 2012, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) announced the ten organisations which had been awarded a place on the Framework to deliver Health and Disability assessments. This Framework is made up of four regional lots: Lot 1 - Scotland, North East and North West England; Lot 2 - Wales and Central England, Lot 3 - London and Southern England; and Lot 4 - Northern Ireland; plus a national lot - Lot 5.
  2. DWP invited the organisations in Lots 1 to 4 to tender to deliver the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) assessment service on behalf of DWP and the Northern Ireland Social Security Agency. DWP announced details of the successful bidders for lots 1-3 in August 2012.
  3. The formal evaluation of written tenders considered the quality, risk and financial aspects of each bid.
  4. The assessment process for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) will not be the same as the Work Capability Assessment (WCA) - which is the assessment process for Employment Support Allowance. The purpose of each assessment is quite distinct and focuses on different criteria. The purpose of the WCA is to determine whether or not a customer is fit for work. The purpose of the PIP assessment is to determine the impact of a person’s disability on their ability to function in their everyday life and is payable to people both in and out of work.
  5. Media enquiries to DSD Communications Team on 028 9082 9456 or email press.office@dsdni.gov.uk. Out of office hours please contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699 715 440.