The procurement process is being conducted in strict compliance with European Union procurement law.
Value for money has been ensured by running a robust and competitive procurement process. Bidders for the Cumbria and Lancashire clinical assessment, treatment and support (CATS) scheme have been required to negotiate and meet specific criteria across a range of specifications including clinical services, finance, workforce, information management and technology, and contract management. The process is in accordance with the Office of Government Commerce best practice.
Netcare was selected as preferred bidder for the Cumbria and Lancashire CATS scheme in August 2006 as they were considered to exceed the performance criteria and provide the best value for money, within the affordability threshold.
The CATS scheme aims to deliver best value to the local health economy by procuring cost effective triaging of general practitioner referrals and a range of diagnostics capacity. All phase two independent sector treatment centre electives schemes will, as part of their final approvals process, need to demonstrate to HM Treasury that they offer value for money when compared to equivalent costs in the national health service.
No contract has yet been signed and the commercial terms are still under negotiation. The scheme is the subject of a public consultation exercise due to conclude in March 2007. The commercial terms between the Department and Netcare, and the cost of the procurement, are commercially sensitive.