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Incorporating Health Information Technology Into Workflow Redesign

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SECTION L—INSTRUCTIONS, CONDITIONS AND NOTICES TO OFFERORS

L.1  SOLICITATION PROVISIONS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE (FEB 1998) (FAR 52.252-1)

This solicitation incorporates the following solicitation provisions by reference, with the same force and effect as if they were given in full text.  The full text of a clause may be assessed electronically at this address: http://www.arnet.gov/far/.

L.2  DATA UNIVERSAL NUMBERING (DUNS)  (OCT 2003) (FAR 52.204-6)

  1. The offeror shall enter, in the block with its name and address on the cover page of its offer, the annotation "DUNS" or "DUNS+4" followed by the DUNS number or "DUNS+4" that identifies the offeror's name and address exactly as stated in the offer.  The DUNS number is a nine-digit number assigned by Dun and Bradstreet Information Services. The DUNS+4 is the DUNS number plus a 4-character suffix that may be assigned at the discretion of the offeror to establish additional CCR records for identifying alternative Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) accounts (see Subpart 32.11) for the same parent concern.
  2. If the offeror does not have a DUNS number, it should contact Dun and Bradstreet directly to obtain one.
    1. An offeror may obtain a DUNSnumber—
      1. If located within the United States, by calling Dun and Bradstreet at 1-866-705-5711 or via the Internet at http://www.dnb.com; or
      2. If located outside the United States, by contacting the local Dun and Bradstreet office.
    2. The offeror should be prepared to provide the following information:
      1. Company legal business name.
      2. Tradestyle, doing business, or other name by which your entity is commonly recognized.
      3. Company physical street address, city, state and Zip Code.
      4. Company mailing address, sity, state and Zip Code (if separate from physical).
      5. Company telephone number.
      6. Date the company was started.
      7. Number of employees at your location.
      8. Chief executive officer/ key manager.
      9. Line of business (industry).
      10. Company Headquarters name and address (reporting relationship within your entity).

(End of provision)

L.3  INSTRUCTIONS TO OFFERORS—COMPETITIVE ACQUISITION (MAY 2001)

ALTERNATE I (JAN 2004)(FAR 52.215-1)

  1. Definitions.  As used in this provision—

    "Discussions" are negotiations that occur after establishment of the competitive range that may, at the Contracting Officer's discretion, result in the offeror being allowed to revise its proposal.

    "In writing," "writing," or "written" means any worded or numbered expression that can be read, reproduced, and later communicated, and includes electronically transmitted and stored information.

    "Proposal modification" is a change made to a proposal before the solicitation's closing date and time, or made in response to an amendment, or made to correct a mistake at any time before award.

    "Proposal revision" is a change to a proposal made after the solicitation closing date, at the request of or as allowed by a Contracting Officer as the result of negotiations.

    "Time," if stated as a number of days, is calculated using calendar days, unless otherwise specified, and will include Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays.  However, if the last day falls on a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday, then the period shall include the next working day.

  2. Amendments to solicitations.  If this solicitation is amended, all terms and conditions that are not amended remain unchanged.  Offerors shall acknowledge receipt of any amendment to this solicitation by the date and time specified in the amendment(s).
  3. Submission, modification, revision, and withdrawal of proposals. 
    1.    Unless other methods (e.g., electronic commerce or facsimile) are permitted in the solicitation, proposals and modifications to proposals shall be submitted in paper media in sealed envelopes or packages (i) addressed to the office specified in the solicitation, and (ii) showing the time and date specified for receipt, the solicitation number, and the name and address of the offeror.  Offerors using commercial carriers should ensure that the proposal is marked on the outermost wrapper with the information in paragraphs (c)(1)(i) and (c)(1)(ii) of this provision.
    2.    The first page of the proposal must show—
      1. The solicitation number;
      2. The name, address, and telephone and facsimile numbers of the offeror (and electronic address if available);
      3. A statement specifying the extent of agreement with all terms, conditions, and provisions  included in the solicitation and agreement to furnish any or all items upon which prices are offered at the price set opposite each item;
      4. Names, titles, and telephone and facsimile numbers (and electronic addresses if  available) of persons authorized to negotiate on the offeror's behalf with the Government  in connection with this solicitation; and
      5. Name, title, and signature of person authorized to sign the proposal.  Proposals signed by an agent shall be accompanied by evidence of that agent's authority, unless that evidence has been previously furnished to the issuing office.
    3.    Submissions, modification, revision, and withdrawal of proposals. 
      1. Offerors are responsible for submitting proposals, and any modification or revisions, so as to reach the Government office designated in the solicitation by the time specified in the solicitation.  If no time is specified in the solicitation, the time for receipt is 4:30 p.m., local time, for the designated Government office on the date that proposal or revision is due.
      2.    (A) Any proposal, modification, or revision received at the Government office designated in the solicitation after the exact time specified for receipt of offers is "late" and will not be considered unless it is received before award is made, the Contracting Officer determines that accepting the late offer would not unduly delay the acquisition; and—
        1.    If it was transmitted through an electronic commerce method authorized by the solicitation, it was received at the initial point of entry to the Government infrastructure not later than 5:00 p.m. one working day prior to the date specified for receipt of proposals; or
        2.   There is acceptable evidence to establish that it was received at the Government installation  designated for receipt of offers and was under the Government's control prior to the time set for receipt of offers; or
        3.   It is the only proposal received.

        (B) However, a late modification of an otherwise successful proposal that makes its terms more favorable to the Government, will be considered at any time it is received and may be accepted.

      3.   Acceptable evidence to establish the time of receipt at the Government installation includes the time/date stamp of that installation on the proposal wrapper, other documentary evidence of receipt maintained by the installation, or oral testimony or statements of Government personnel.
      4. If an emergency or unanticipated event interrupts normal Government processes so that proposals cannot be received at the office designated for receipt of proposals by the exact time specified in the solicitation, and urgent Government requirements preclude amendment of the solicitation, the time specified for receipt of proposals will be deemed to be extended to the same time of day specified in the solicitation on the first work day on which normal Government processes resume.
      5.   Proposals may be withdrawn by written notice received at any time before award.  Oral proposals in response to oral solicitations may be withdrawn orally.  If the solicitation authorizes facsimile proposals, proposals may be withdrawn via facsimile received at any time before award, subject to the conditions specified in the provision at 52.215-5, "Facsimile Proposals."  Proposals may be withdrawn in person by an offeror or an authorized representative, if the representative's identity is made known and the representative signs a receipt for the proposal before award.
    4.   Unless otherwise specified in the solicitation, the offeror may propose to provide any item or combination of items.
    5. Offerors shall submit proposals submitted in response to this solicitation in English, unless otherwise permitted by the solicitation, and in U.S. dollars, unless the provision at FAR 52.225-17, Evaluation of Foreign Currency Offers, is included in the solicitation.
    6. Offerors may submit modifications to their proposals at any time before the solicitation closing date and time, and may submit modifications in response to an amendment, or to correct a mistake at any time before award.
    7. Offers may submit revised proposals only if requested or allowed by the Contracting Officer.
    8. Proposals may be withdrawn at any time before award.  Withdrawals are effective upon receipt of notice by the Contracting Officer.
  4. Offer expiration date.  Proposals in response to this solicitation will be valid for the number of days specified on the solicitation cover sheet (unless a different period is proposed by the offeror).
  5.    Restriction on disclosure and use of data.  Offerors that include in their proposals data that they do not want disclosed to the public for any purpose, or used by the Government except for evaluation purposes, shall—
    1. Mark the title page with the following legend:

      This proposal includes data that shall not be disclosed outside the Government and shall not be duplicated, used, or disclosed—in whole or in part—for any purpose other than to evaluate this proposal. If, however, a contract is awarded to this offeror as a result of—or in connection with—the submission of this data, the Government shall have the right to duplicate, use, or disclose the data to the extent provided in the resulting contract.  This restriction does not limit the Government's right to use information contained in this data if it is obtained from another source without restriction.  The data subject to this restriction are contained in sheets [insert numbers or other identification of sheets]; and

    2. Mark each sheet of data it wishes to restrict with the following legend:

      Use or disclosure of data contained on this sheet is subject to the restriction on the title page of this proposal.

  6. Contract award.
    1.   The Government intends to award a contract or contracts resulting from this solicitation to the responsible offeror(s) whose proposal(s) represents the best value after evaluation in accordance with the factors and subfactors in the solicitation.
    2. The Government may reject any or all proposals if such action is in the Government's interest.
    3. The Government may waive informalities and minor irregularities in proposals received.
    4. The Government intends to evaluate proposals and award a contract after conducting discussions with offerors whose proposals have been determined to be within the competitive range.  If the Contracting Officer determines that the number of proposals that would otherwise be in the competitive range exceeds the number at which an efficient competition can be conducted, the Contracting Officer may limit the number of proposals in the competitive range to the greatest number that will permit an efficient competition among the most highly rated proposals.  Therefore, the offeror's initial proposal should contain the offeror's best terms from a price and technical standpoint.
    5. The Government reserves the right to make an award on any item for a quantity less than the quantity offered, at the unit cost or prices offered, unless the offeror specifies otherwise in the proposal.
    6. The Government reserves the right to make multiple awards if, after considering the additional administrative costs, it is in the Government's best interest to do so.
    7. Exchanges with offerors after receipt of a proposal do not constitute a rejection or counteroffer by the Government.
    8. The Government may determine that a proposal is unacceptable if the prices proposed are materially unbalanced between line items or subline items. Unbalanced pricing exists when, despite an acceptable total evaluated price, the price of one or more contract line items is significantly overstated or understated as indicated by the application of cost or price analysis techniques.  A proposal may be rejected if the Contracting Officer determines that the lack of balance poses an unacceptable risk to the Government.
    9. If a cost realism analysis is performed, cost realism may be considered by the source selection authority in evaluating performance or schedule risk.
    10. A written award or acceptance of proposal mailed or otherwise furnished to the successful offeror within the time specified in the proposal shall result in a binding contract without further action by either party.
    11. If a post-award debriefing is given to requesting offerors, the Government shall disclose the following information, if applicable:
      1. The agency's evaluation of the significant weak or deficient factors in the debriefed offeror's offer.
      2. The overall evaluated cost or price and technical rating of the successful and the debriefed offeror and past performance information on the debriefed offeror.
      3. The overall ranking of all offerors, when any ranking was developed by the agency during source selection.
      4. A summary of the rationale for award.
      5. For acquisitions of commercial items, the make and model of the item to be delivered by the successful offeror.
      6. Reasonable responses to relevant questions posed by the debriefed offerors as to whether source-selection procedures set forth in the solicitation, applicable regulations, and other applicable authorities were followed by the agency.

(End of provision)

L.4  TYPE OF CONTRACT (APRIL 1984) (FAR 52.216-1)

The Government contemplates award of a firm fixed price contract resulting from this solicitation.

L.5  SINGLE OR MULTIPLE AWARDS (OCT 1995)(FAR 52.216-27)

The Government may elect to award a single contract or to award multiple contracts for the same or similar supplies or services to two or more sources under this solicitation.

L.6  SERVICE OF PROTEST (AUG 1996)(FAR 52.233-2)

  1. Protests, as defined in Section 33.101 of the Federal Acquisition Regulation, that are filed directly with an agency, and copies of any protests that are filed with the General Accounting Office (GAO) shall be served on the Contracting Officer (addressed as follows) by obtaining written and dated acknowledgment of receipt from:

    Director, Division of Contracts Management
    Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
    540 Gaither Road
    Rockville, Maryland  20850

  2.    The copy of any protest shall be received in the office designated above within one day of filing a protest with the GAO.

L.7  POINT OF CONTACT FOR TECHNICAL INQUIRIES

The technical contact for additional information and answering inquiries is the Project Officer.

All questions regarding this solicitation shall be in writing and received by the Contract Specialist no later than 12:00 noon EST August 11, 2008. All questions should be E-mailed to Linda Simpson at Linda.Simpson@ahrq.hhs.gov.

L.8  REFERENCE MATERIALS (IRESERVED)

L.9  GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS

Introduction

The following instructions will establish the acceptable minimum requirements for the format and contents of proposals. 

  1.   Contract Type and General Provisions:  It is contemplated that a firm fixed price contract will be awarded.  In addition to the special provisions of this request for proposal (RFP), any resultant contract shall include the general clauses applicable to the selected offeror's organization and type of contract awarded.  Any additional clauses required by Public Law, Executive Order, or procurement regulations, in effect at the time of execution of the proposed contract, will be included.
  2.   Authorized Official and Submission of Proposal:  The proposal shall be signed by an official authorized to bind your (the offeror's) organization.  Your proposal shall be submitted in the number of copies, to the address, and marked as indicated in the cover letter of this solicitation.  Proposals will be typewritten, reproduced on letter sized paper and will be legible in all required copies. 
  3. Separation of Technical, Past Performance Information, and Business Proposal:  The proposal shall be in 4 separate parts. To expedite the proposal evaluation, all documents required for responding to the RFP should be placed in the following order:

    1. TECHNICAL PROPOSAL:  See Technical Proposal Instructions for recommended format (L.10). Please mark as original or copy.
    2. PAST PERFORMANCE INFORMATION: See Past Performance Information Instructions for format (L.11)
    3. BUSINESS PROPOSAL:  See Business Proposal Instructions for recommended format (L.13).
  4. Each of the parts shall be separate and complete in itself so that evaluation of one may be accomplished independently of, and concurrently with, evaluation of the other. 

  5. Evaluation of Proposals:  The Government will evaluate technical proposals in accordance with the criteria set forth in Section M, Evaluation/Award Criteria.
  6. Rejection of Proposals:  The Government reserves the right to reject any or all proposals received.  It is understood that your proposal will become part of the official contract file.
  7. Unnecessarily Elaborate Proposals:  Unnecessarily elaborate brochures or other presentations beyond those sufficient to present a complete and effective proposal are not desired and may be construed as an indication of the offeror's lack of cost consciousness.  Elaborate art work, expensive visual and other presentation aids are neither necessary nor wanted.
  8. Privacy Act:  The Privacy Act of 1974 (Public Law (P.L.) 93-579) requires that a Federal agency advise each individual whom it asks to supply information:  1) the authority which authorized the solicitation; 2) whether disclosure is voluntary or mandatory; (3) the principal purpose or purposes for which the information is intended to be used; (4) the uses outside the agency which may be made of the information; and 4) the effects on the individual, if any, of not providing all or any part of the requested information.

        Therefore:

    1. The Government is requesting the information called for in this RFP pursuant to the authority provided by Section 301(g) of the Public Health Service Act, as amended, and P.L. 92-218, as amended.
    2. Provisions of the information requested are entirely voluntary.
    3. The collection of this information is for the purpose of conducting an accurate, fair, and adequate review prior to a discussion as to whether to award a contract.
    4. Failure to provide any or all of the requested information may result in a less than adequate review.
    5. The information provided by you may be routinely disclosed for the following purposes:
      • to the cognizant audit agency and the General Accounting Officer for auditing;
      • to the Department of Justice as required for litigation;
      • to respond to Congressional inquiries; and
      • to qualified experts, not within the definition of Department employees for opinions as a part of the review process.

        In addition, the Privacy Act of 1974 (P.L. 93-579, Section 7) requires that the following information be provided when individuals are requested to disclose their social security number.

    Provision of the social security number is voluntary.  Social security numbers are requested for the purpose of accurate and efficient identification, referral, review and management of AHRQ contracting programs.  Authority for requesting this information is provided by Section 305 and Title IV of the Public Health Service Act, as amended.

  9. The RFP does not commit the Government to pay any cost for the preparation and submission of a proposal.  It is also brought to your attention that the Contracting Officer is the only individual who can legally commit the Government to the expenditure of public funds in connection with this or any acquisition action.

    The Government reserves the right to award a contract without discussions if the Contracting Officer determines that the initial prices are fair and reasonable and that discussions are not necessary.

L.10 TECHNICAL PROPOSAL INSTRUCTIONS

The technical proposal shall contain an original and ten (10) copies.   The technical proposal described below shall be limited to 50 pages not including biographic sketches, with no less than a 11 point font, double-spaced (lists of deliverables, person loading charts, and similar materials need not be double-spaced, so long as they are legible) and numbered pages. Brief biographic sketches or CVs (less than ten pages in length) providing the relevant qualifications necessary for this effort are only required for key personnel.   The technical proposal shall not contain reference to cost; however resources information, such as data concerning labor hours and categories, labor mix, materials, subcontracts, etc., shall be contained in the technical proposal so that your understanding of the Statement of Work (SOW) may be evaluated.  It must disclose your technical approach in as much detail as possible, including, but not limited to, the requirements of these instructions. Lengthy proposals and voluminous appendices are neither needed nor desired as they are difficult to read and evaluate and may indicate the offeror's inability to concisely state their proposal.

  1. Recommended Technical Proposal Format

    The offeror's proposal should present sufficient information to reflect a thorough understanding of the work requirements and a detailed plan for achieving the objectives of the scope of work.  Technical proposals shall not merely paraphrase the requirements of the Agency's scope of work or parts thereof, or use of phrases such as "will comply" or "standard techniques will be employed."  The technical proposal must include a detailed description of the techniques and procedures to be used in achieving the proposed end results in compliance with the requirements of the Agency's scope of work. 

    1.   Cover Page

      The name of the proposing organization, author(s) of the technical proposal, the RFP number and the title of the RFP should appear on the cover. The cover page must also include the DUNS and TIN as well as a point of contact and contact information.  One (1) manually signed original copy of the proposal and the number of copies specified in the RFP cover letter are required.

    2. Table of Contents

      Provide sufficient detail so that all important elements of the proposal can be located readily.

    3. Introduction 

      This should be a one or two page summary outlining the proposed work, your interest in submitting a proposal, and the importance of this effort in relation to your overall operation.

    4. Technical Discussion

       The offeror shall prepare a technical discussion which addresses evaluation criteria A, B, C, D, below.  The offeror shall further state that no deviations or exceptions to the Statement of Work (SOW) are taken.  he evaluation criteria (described in more detail in Section M) are as follows:

      1. Understanding the Problem
      2. Technical Approach
      3. Key Personnel
      4. Capacity and Management Plan

  2. Technical Proposal Requirements

    Technical proposals submitted in response to this RFP shall address each of the items described below, and shall be organized in the same manner.  Suggested page lengths are indicated for each section.  These section page lengths are not mandatory, however the total length of the technical proposal (not including cover page, table of contents, resumes or bibiographies) may not exceed 50 pages.  Proposals shall be prepared in double-spaced format, with numbered pages.

    1. Understanding the Problem

      Offeror shall provide a brief statement of the issues and problems which underscore the concept of and need for this task order contract.  This background should include any expertise the offeror can bring to understanding the problem. Also included in this section shall be a description of the scope, purpose, and products of the services and products called for in this contract.  General discussion of technical approaches to the different types of activities identified in the RFP should be included. The offeror shall demonstrate a general, but thorough, understanding of the objectives, organization, and operation of AHRQ.

    2. Technical Approach

      Offeror shall submit a narrative which clearly addresses how he or she plans to develop, design, and implement the statement of work within the time constraints of the project.  Within the content of the narrative, the offeror shall address plans for identifying relevant literature and existing workflow analysis tools or methods; the methodology for conducting the review, including search, abstraction and summarizing; generating clear, concise reports on project findings; incorporating findings into the toolkit development.

      1. Provide a description of the literature review and environmental scan methodology, including proposed data bases, search terms, abstraction process
      2. Describe how the literature and scan results will be analyzed and summarized
      3. Describe how the request for information (RFI) results will be summarized
      4. Describe how this will be incorporated into the development of the toolkit
      5. Include a proposed dissemination plan and activities under that plan
      6. Describe how user testing will inform the final toolkit

      With reference to each task required by the Statement of Work, the offeror shall address the technical approach proposed for each task.

    3.   Key Personnel

      The proposal shall specify the project team, including subcontractors and consultants. Offeror shall provide evidence of the availability, qualifications, and demonstrated experience of key management personnel, including the Project Director or Manager. The project director should have demonstrated experience in managing large scale human factors, practice redesign and/or toolkit development research projects. The personnel should have demonstrated experience in workflow analysis and redesign, conducting literature reviews, as well as familiarity with medical organizations.

      1. Describe how the education and technical experience of the Project Director and other key technical personnel specifically relate to the SOW.
      2. Provide length and currency of the overall education of the Project Director, the Project Manager and other key technical personnel.  
      3. Describe the experience of the proposed Project Director in managing the SOW and projects that contain such elements as conducting literature reviews, engaging key stakeholders in projects, information systems for data collection and management, report development and production, toolkit development, and large-scale dissemination activities.   

    4. Capacity and Management Plan

      Offeror shall demonstrate his/her ability to achieve the delivery of performance requirements through the proposed use of corporate management and other personnel resources as well as demonstrate that the offeror's organizational structure and capabilities will meet the project's milestones in a timely manner. Demonstrate corporate experience in managing projects of a similar size and nature. Show the capacity for identifying and achieving success in studying proposed sites.

      Provide a fully supported narrative showing offeror's understanding of the requirements in the Statement of Work from a managerial perspective.  The narrative should address the following topics:

      1. labor skill mix determination (why you chose the skill mix for this project)
      2. personnel selection and assignment (why you chose an individual person for an individual job), as well as percentage time dedicated to this project
      3. timeline and capacity for scheduling and executing tasks in SOW.

L.11 PAST PERFORMANCE INFORMATION

Offerors shall submit the following information (original and 3 copies) as part of their proposal for both the offeror and proposed major subcontractors:

  1. A list of the last five (5) contracts and subcontracts, grants, or self-funded  projects completed (most relevant or most related) during the past three years and all contracts and subcontracts currently in process in which the offeror is a contractor, grantee, or participant in a self-funded project.  Reference contracts, subcontracts, grants, and self-funded projects completed during the past three years and include recently completed and ongoing work directly related to the requirements of this acquisition. Contracts listed may include those entered into by the Federal Government, agencies of State and local governments and commercial customers.  Offerors that are newly formed entities without prior contracts should list contracts and subcontracts as required for all key personnel.  Include the following information for each contract, subcontract, grant, or self-funded project:

    1. Name of activity
    2. Contract number (if relevant)
    3. Contract type (if relevant)
    4. Total contract/grant/project value
    5. Work performed
    6. Reference (Contracting Officer and telephone number)
    7. Program Manager and telephone number
    8. Administrative Contracting Officer (if relevant), if different from item f, and telephone number
    9. List of major subcontracts (if relevant)
  2.   The offeror may provide information on problems encountered on the projects identified in (1) above and corrective actions taken to resolve those problems.  Offerors should not provide general information on their performance on the identified projects.  General performance information will be obtained from the references.
  3. The offeror may describe any quality awards or certifications that may indicate the offeror possesses a high-quality process for developing and producing the product or service required.  Identify what segment of the organization (one division or the entire organization) that received the award or certification.  Describe when the award or certification was bestowed.  If the award or certification is over three years old, present evidence that the qualifications still apply.
  4. Each offeror will be evaluated on his/her performance under existing and prior projects for similar products or services. Performance information will be used for both responsibility determinations and as an evaluation factor against which offeror's relative rankings will be compared to assure best value to the Government.  The Government will focus on information that demonstrates quality of performance relative to the size and complexity of the procurement under consideration.  References other than those identified by the offeror may be contacted by the Government with the information received used in the evaluation of the offeror's past performance.

    The attached Past Performance Questionnaire and Performance Form shall be completed by those organizations listed in (1) above.  The evaluation forms shall be completed and forwarded directly to:

    Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
    Division of Contracts Management
    Attn:  Linda L. Simpson, Contract Specialist
    540 Gaither Road, Suite 4315
    Rockville, Maryland 20850
    FAX: 301-427-1740

    Evaluation forms must be received by the date and time listed in order to be included in the review process.  It is the responsibility of the offeror to ensure that these documents are forwarded to the Contract Specialist.

L.12 BUSINESS PROPOSAL

The offeror shall submit as part of the proposal a separate enclosure titled "Business Proposal."  The Business Proposal shall include the Cost/Price Proposal, the Small Business Subcontracting Plan, and Other Administrative Data in accordance with the following:

  1. Cost/Price Proposal

    The business proposal must contain sufficient information to allow the Government to perform a basic analysis of the proposed cost or price of the work.  This information shall include the amounts of the basic elements of the proposed cost or price.

    1. Certified, unloaded, labor rates for individuals expected to work on a project of this size and nature. 
    2. If available, certified documentation that the offeror has a current indirect cost rate agreement in place with a Federal agency or that is in the process of obtaining or revising such an agreement.  A copy of the indirect cost rate agreement or the proposed rate agreement shall be provided if available.
  2. Other Administrative Data
    1. Terms and Conditions:  The proposal shall stipulate that it is predicated upon the terms and conditions of the RFP.  In addition, it shall contain a statement to the effect that it is firm for a period of at least 120 days from the date of receipt thereof by the Government.

      Minimum Bid Acceptance Period (April 1984)

      1. "Acceptance period," as used in this provision, means the number of calendar days available to the Government for awarding a contract from the date specified in this solicitation for receipt of bids.
      2. This provision supersedes any language pertaining to the acceptance period that may appear elsewhere in this solicitation.
      3. The Government requires a minimum acceptance period of 120 days.
      4. A bid allowing less than the Government's minimum acceptance period may be rejected.
      5. The bidder agrees to execute all that it has undertaken to do, in compliance with its bid, if that bid is accepted in writing within (i) the acceptance period stated in paragraph (3) above, or (ii) any longer acceptance period stated in paragraph (4) above.
    2. Authority to Conduct Negotiations:  The proposal shall list the names and telephone numbers of persons authorized to conduct negotiations and to execute contracts.

    3.   Property:
      1. It is HHS policy that contractors will provide all equipment and facilities necessary for performance of contracts.  Exception may be granted to furnish Government-owned property, or to authorize purchase with contract funds, only when approved by the contracting officer.  If additional equipment must be acquired, you shall include the description, estimated cost of each item and whether you will furnish such items with your own funds.
      2. You shall identify Government-owned property in your possession and/or property acquired from Federal funds to which you have title, that is proposed to be used in the performance of the prospective contract.
      3. The management and control of any Government property shall be in accordance with HHS Publication (OS) 74-115 entitled, Contractor's Guide for Control of Government Property 1990, a copy of which will be provided upon request.
    4. Royalties:  You shall furnish information concerning royalties which are anticipated to be paid in connection with the performance of work under the proposed contract.
    5. Commitments:  You shall list other commitments with the Government relating to the specified work or services and indicate whether these commitments will or will not interfere with the completion of work and/or services contemplated under this proposal.
    6. Financial Capacity:  You shall provide sufficient data to indicate that you have the necessary financial capacity, working capital, and other resources to perform the contract without assistance from any outside source.  If not, indicate the amount required and the anticipated source.  (Financial data such as balance sheets, profit and loss statements, cash forecasts, and financial histories of your organization's affiliated concerns should be utilized.)
    7. Performance Capability:  You shall provide acceptable evidence of your "ability to obtain" equipment, facilities, and personnel necessary to perform the requirements of this project.  If these are not represented in your current operations, they should normally be supported by commitment or explicit arrangement, which is in existence at the time the contract is to be awarded, for the rental, purchase, or other acquisition of such resources, equipment, facilities, or personnel.  In addition, you shall indicate your ability to comply with the required or proposed delivery or performance schedule taking into consideration all existing business commitments, commercial as well as Government.
    8. Representations and Certifications:  Section K, "Representations and Certifications and Other Statements of Offerors" shall be completed and signed by an official authorized to bind your organization.  Section K shall be made a part of the original business proposal.

L.14 SELECTION OF OFFERORS

  1. The acceptability of the technical portion of each contract proposal will be evaluated by a technical review committee.  The committee will evaluate each proposal in strict conformity with the evaluation criteria of the RFP, utilizing point scores and written critiques.  The committee may suggest that the Contracting Officer request clarifying information from an offeror.
  2. The business portion of each contract proposal will be subjected to a limited cost review, management analysis, etc.
  3. Past performance of the technically acceptable offerors will be evaluated by AHRQ staff.  A competitive range will be determined.  The competitive range will consist of those offers which are highly rated, based upon the technical and past performance evaluation.  Oral or written discussions will be conducted with all offerors in the competitive range, if necessary.  All aspects of the proposals are subject to discussions, including cost, technical approach, past performance, and contractual terms and conditions. Final Proposal Revisions may be requested with the reservation of the right to conduct limited negotiations after submission of Final Proposal Revisions.
  4. A final best-value analysis will be performed taking into consideration the results of the technical evaluation, cost analysis, past performance, and ability to complete the work within the Government's required schedule.  The Government reserves the right to make an award to the best advantage of the Government, technical merit, cost, past performance, and other factors considered.
  5. The Government reserves the right to make a single award, multiple awards, or no award at all to the RFP.

L.15 PROPOSAL INTENT/APPROVAL FOR CONTACT INFORMATION FOR BIDDERS LIST

It is requested that if an offeror intends to submit a proposal to this solicitation that the attached Proposal Intent Form be completed and returned to the address indicated by the date indicated.  The submission of the intent form is not binding on an offeror to submit a proposal, nor does the failure to submit the form prohibit an offeror from submitting a proposal.  The purpose is to provide us with an estimated number of proposals to assist us in our planning and logistics for proposal reviews. 

We have added a request to include your contact information to a bidders list.  The bidders list will be provided to interested offerors for subcontracting opportunities, as part of an amendment to the solicitation.  In order for AHRQ to include your contact information on the bidders list, you must return the Proposal Intent Form and check the box that grants permission to add your name no later than the date listed above.

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SECTION M—EVALUATION FACTORS FOR AWARD

EVALUATION FACTORS FOR AWARD

  1. Award will be made to that responsible offeror whose proposal is most advantageous to the Government, cost and the below factors considered.  Paramount consideration shall be given to technical quality rather than cost.  It is pointed out, however, that should technical quality between offerors be considered approximately the same, then cost may become the determining factor in award selection.
  2. The technical proposal will be evaluated in terms of its responses to the evaluation factors.  The evaluation factors and assigned weights which will be used in the technical review of the proposal submitted are outlined below.
EVALUATION CRITERIA WEIGHT
1. Understanding the problem20
2. Technical approach50
3. Key personnel20
4. Capacity and management plan10

 EVALUATION CRITERIA

  1. Award will be made to that responsible offeror whose proposal is most advantageous to the Government, cost and the below factors considered.  Paramount consideration shall be given to technical quality rather than cost.  It is pointed out, however, that should technical quality between offerors be considered approximately the same, then cost may become the determining factor in award selection.

    THE GOVERNMENT RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MAKE AN AWARD WITHOUT DISCUSSION.

  2. The technical proposal will be evaluated in terms of its responses to the evaluation factors.  The evaluation factors and assigned weights which will be used in the technical review of the proposal submitted are outlined below.  Factors facilitating the evaluation of each criterion below are described in Attachment 1 of the solicitation:
 
Evaluation Criteria Weight
A. Understanding the Problem20
 

The proposal shall be evaluated on the completeness of the proposal and the offeror's demonstrated understanding of the problems of the project in its response to the objectives and tasks and solution approach thereto.  The offeror must demonstrate that they have the knowledge of how workflow analysis and redesign fits into the broader context of Health Information Technology (HIT) implementation, in particular in ambulatory care settings.

 
Evaluation Criteria Weight
B.  Technical Approach50
 

The proposal shall be evaluated on the completeness, reasonableness, clarity, and feasibility of the approach to satisfy the requirements of the literature review,  environmental scan, synthesis of request for information (RFI) results and toolkit development.  Specifically, the offeror should demonstrate an understanding on how toolkits are successful and useful.  The proposal must specify and justify the literature to be reviewed, environmental scan approach, outline the processes for both, and show a synthesis plan that will enable toolkit development.

 
Evaluation Criteria Weight
C.  Key Personnel20

The background, skills, professional experience and education of key personnel in the area of workflow analysis and redesign, ambulatory clinical workflow, and health IT shall be evaluated.

 
Evaluation Criteria Weight
D.  Capacity and Management Plan10

The offeror will be evaluated on its demonstrated ability to achieve the delivery of performance requirements through the proposed use of corporate management and other personnel resources.  Evaluation will consider the offeror's proposed organizational structure and demonstrated capabilities to meet the projects milestones within the timeframe of the proposed contract and within the negotiated fixed price.

The offeror will be evaluated on it's demonstrated understanding of the requirements of the Statement of Work from a managerial perspective, as detailed below:

  1. labor skill mix determination
  2. personnel selection and assignment
  3. timelines and capacity for scheduling and executing the tasks of the SOW within the timeframe of the proposed contract and within the negotiated fixed price.

Proposals will be evaluated on relevant projects, provided as examples, with specific narrative of how they apply to the above criteria.

TOTAL POINTS BEFORE PAST PERFORMANCE: 100

   E. Past Performance: 25

(TO BE RATED ONLY AFTER A DETERMINATION OF TECHNICAL ACCEPTABILITY OF THE OFFEROR'S PROPOSAL, BASED ON THE ABOVE TECHNICAL EVALUATION CRITERIA)

The offeror's past performance will be evaluated after completion of the technical evaluation.  Only those offerors determined to be technically acceptable will be evaluated.  Each offeror will be evaluated on its performance under existing and prior contracts for similar products or services.  Performance information will be used for both responsibility determinations and as an evaluation factor against which offeror's relative rankings will be compared.

The Government reserves the right to evaluate relevant past performance information not specifically provided by the offeror.

The Government will assess the relative risks associated with each offeror. Performance risks are those associated with an offeror's likelihood of success in performing the acquisition requirements as indicated by the offeror's record of past performance.

If the offeror or the proposed employees for the offeror, do not have a past performance history relative to this acquisition, or past performance not relative to this acquisition,  the offeror will not be evaluated favorably or unfavorably on this factor.  A neutral rating will be determined.

In evaluating past performance the Government, will consider the offeror's effectiveness in quality of products or services; timeliness of performance; cost control; business practices; customer satisfaction, and key personnel past performance.

TOTAL AVAILABLE POINTS: 125

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