‘Not true’ that CCGs must always use competitive tenders, says regulator

Williams, D. HSJ. Published online: 20 May 2016

  • NHS Improvement issues procurement guidance to CCGs
  • Briefing note confirms new EU rules will force new contracts to be advertised
  • Regulator emphasises alternatives to competitive tendering

NHS Improvement has told commissioners that competitive tenders are not always needed to choose a provider, following the introduction of a strict new EU procurement regime.

The regulator sent a briefing note to clinical commissioning groups late last week on selecting providers and awarding contracts.

The document, seen by HSJ, confirms that CCGs will be required to advertise new contracts and extensions or variations of existing contracts. This is the result of new EU procurement rules, which have applied to the NHS since April.

It adds that where CCGs receive a number of responses they should not discriminate between providers, and should run a process that enables them to select the best bid.

However, the letter says: “It is not true that all contracts must be awarded using a competitive tender process. There are lots of ways of [selecting a provider], including through an open process or by negotiation.”

Read the full article here

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