The Department for Work and Pensions has renewed a contract with IT services company Atos Origin to deliver medical advice and assessment services in a deal worth £500m over seven years.
Under the contract, Atos Origin will manage the provision of medical advice and assessments on behalf of the DWP for incapacity benefits, industrial injuries disablement benefits, disability living allowances and other benefits. It will also provide services to the Ministry of Defence Veterans Agency.
The contract can be extended by a maximum of five years under two separate extension clauses: the first for three years and the second for two years. These take the potential total contract value to more than £850m over 12 years.
Through technology and process transformation, Atos Origin said it aimed to reduce end-to-end processing times and extend the scope and deployment of its evidence-based medicine programme.
The company said it would further develop medical protocols using the latest clinical research and the best practice of clinical governance. It also plans to upgrade the DWP's IT infrastructure and enhance the logic-integrated medical assessments system, which supports doctors during the assessment process and produces electronic reports.
Atos Origin said it would continue to focus on the recruitment, training and career development of its medical staff to ensure that it retained and attracted professionals with the qualifications, experience and skills needed to carry out such assessments.