Government launches procurement for new contracting platform
DHSC wants centralised tool to improve procurement oversight
Central NHS organisations agree to use the platform
NHS organisations will be given the chance to advertise and manage tenders on a new platform under government plans to create a centralised buying tool.
The Department of Health and Social Care last week launched a procurement for a supplier to provide an “eCommercial system”, which aims to address the fragmented way the NHS procures contracts.
The successful system must provide the following procurement functions for the NHS:
- Tender creation, issue and management;
- Dynamic purchasing systems;
- Governance and approvals management; and
- Savings management and supplier monitoring.
The system will be used by the DHSC and nine other NHS arm’s-length bodies, agencies and regulators, such as Health Education England, the Care Quality Commission, NHS England and NHS Digital. NHS trusts will be entitled to use the system if they choose to, although it is unclear whether, or how much, trusts will be charged to post and manage tenders.
Several of the national bodies, including NHSE, manage their tenders through a portal provided by software firm BravoSolution, while trusts can use whichever system they prefer.
But this makes data and information collation up to the DHSC’s commercial directorate “extremely complicated and time consuming”, according to the tender documents (attached below).
“Having a system with a single data set would enable simplified reporting, which can be carried out by a central team,” the document stated.
Source: Health Service Journal
Author: Nick Carding
Date: 2nd September 2019