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United Kingdom-London: Services provided by medical laboratories
Contract award notice
Results of the procurement procedure
Section I: Contracting authority
Section II: Object
Randox Laboratories — Provision of Lab Services
Provision of services to support the UK Covid-19 Testing Strategy.
Section IV: Procedure
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 that there is adequate testing. Subsequently securing sufficient lab capacity in order to process test results is crucial.
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: Increased lab capacity to increase the amount and fast turnaround of tests processed was identified as strictly necessary to meet the demand to scale up the testing programme in the 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 the amount of tests processed increases with the necessary demand.
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 The extremely urgent requirement for Covid-19 testing services meant DHSC could not wait for the outcome of an accelerated procurement in order to secure testing capacity, particularly since the level of demand for mass testing internationally meant that available supply needed to be secured as soon as possible. Unless it moved rapidly DHSC risked losing the services and supplies needed to ensure the vital testing capability. The duration of the agreement has been limited to what is absolutely necessary to meet the immediate need. Similarly, the volumes being ordered under the agreement are consistent with meeting the immediate need.
Section V: Award of contract
Section VI: Complementary information