The government will announce the successful bidder for the contract to operate the Health and Work Service in England and Wales in July.
The service, which will be introduced later this year and will offer specialist occupational health assessments and advice to employers, employees and GPs, is designed to reduce the costs of sickness absence for employers by addressing the obstacles preventing a return to work, and supporting employees back to work as quickly as appropriate.
The Department for Work and Pensions says the new service will provide a more proactive way to manage sickness absence than the Statutory Sick Pay Percentage Threshold Scheme, which was abolished in April, with funding being reallocated to funding the new service.
The tendering process to procure a supplier closed on 9 May 2014.
A DWP spokesperson says: “The DWP and Scottish Government have agreed a proposal for the Health and Work Service in Scotland to be delivered by Scottish Government on behalf of the UK Government. We continue to work together on the design and implementation in Scotland. Implementation is anticipated to be phased, and will begin later this year.”