Award of a contract without prior publication of a call for competition in the Official Journal of the European Union in the cases listed below
In accordance with the negotiated procedure without prior publication under Regulation 32(2)(c) of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 (PCR) and PPN 01/20 on the following basis:
1) The Covid-19 outbreak is a Public Health Emergency of International Concern as declared by the World Health Organisation on 30 January 2020. The WHO Director General characterised Covid-19 as a pandemic on 11 March 2020.
2) A key element of ensuring an effective response to the pandemic is ensuring the ability to quickly set up and operate Covid-19 testing sites at various locations across the UK.
3) DHSC is satisfied the tests permitting use of the negotiated procedure without prior publication (Regulation 32(2)(c)) are met:
A. As far as is strictly necessary: to support the rapid set-up and operation of Covid-19 testing sites at various locations across the UK and the need for a rapid, scalable and deliverable service with maximum geographical coverage across the whole UK.
B. There are genuine reasons for extreme urgency: It is responding to Covid-19 immediately because of public health risks presenting a genuine emergency.
C. The events that have led to the need for extreme urgency were unforeseeable: the Commission itself confirmed: ‘The current coronavirus crisis presents an extreme and unforeseeable urgency – precisely for such a situation our European rules enable public buyers to buy within a matter of days, even hours, if necessary.’ (Commissioner Breton, Internal Market, 1 April 2020).
D. It is impossible to comply with the usual timescales in the PCR: It is not possible to comply with the timescales of another procedure due to the urgent requirement to ensure rapid set-up and operation of Covid-19 testing sites on the scale required to be capable of delivery at locations across the whole of the UK.
E. The situation is not attributable to the contracting authority – DHSC has not done anything to cause or contribute to the need for extreme urgency.