Atos PIP contract is ‘area of interest’ for spending watchdog

It’s high time this was looked at

Benefit tales

The public spending watchdog has had “discussions” with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) over concerns about a £184 million disability assessment contract awarded to Atos Healthcare.

The much-criticised company won the contract last year to carry out assessments for the new personal independence payment (PIP) – the replacement for disability living allowance – across London and the south of England.

But Disability News Service (DNS), and the crossbench peer Lord [David] Alton, have raised serious concerns about the award of the contract. Now the National Audit Office (NAO) has confirmed that it is investigating these concerns.

In a letter to the peer, Max Tse, NAO’s value for money director, told Lord Alton that his concern about DWP’s PIP contract with Atos Healthcare was “an area of interest to the NAO”.

He said NAO had had “a number of discussions with the department on its contractual arrangements for the…

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