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Request for Proposals
Solicitation No. AHRQ-01-0006 (Full and Open Competition, with recommended
small business goals)
Proposals Due: July 20, 2001 (revised by Amendment 2)
Contracting Office: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Division of
Contracts Management, 2101 East Jefferson Street, Suite 502, Rockville, MD
The synopsis for this requirement was published in the Commerce Business
Daily on April 27, 2001, under the title of National Measures Clearinghouse.
The solicitation issue date is May 17, 2001. Select to access Downloading
Information. Printed copies are not available. If you have any trouble
downloading this solicitation, please contact Mary Haines, Contracting Officer,
It is anticipated that a cost-plus award fee performance based contract award
will be made under this solicitation for a 4-year period of performance.
Background and Purpose
AHRQ has gained valuable experience in its sponsorship of CONQUEST and the National Guideline Clearinghouse™ (NGC) and
believes significant advantages for the health care community can result from
the development of a National Quality Measures Clearinghouse™ (NQMC) and an
integrated suite of quality and clinical information tool modules. AHRQ also
believes that economies can be realized by developing a common database backbone
to house the proposed NQMC, NGC, and other clinical information and decision
While some of the audiences for NGC and the NQMC do not overlap, many users
will be interested in both tools. The Agency would like to provide a mechanism
for those users who wish to coordinate their search for information within both
AHRQ intends NQMC and NGC to be accessible individually through unique
Uniform Resource Locators (URLs), as well as through an umbrella Web site, also
with a unique URL. The umbrella Web site would be capable of housing both
information tools and potentially other clinical information tools while
providing a user-friendly universal Web-based interface. Thus, the goal is to
develop a suite of Internet-based tool modules with a common "look and feel."
Each tool will appear as an individual module and site to the user but will
share a common information system infrastructure and backbone database system
and have clear prompts to open the user's searches to include materials from the
other related tool modules. It is expected that each tool module, including the
umbrella site, will utilize standard, common Web-based data query, database
storage software and search engine tools, have consistent graphic and
navigational features and controlled vocabularies, and share other technical
database, software and computer specifications where content-appropriate and
Offerors should keep in mind that computer capabilities of users will differ
significantly in their level of technological sophistication. For this reason,
it will be necessary to provide a platform that will address the needs of users
with either high-end or low-end capabilities. Pages that use table formatting
must also be available in formats (i.e., plain text) for browsers that cannot
render tables. Frames may be used as long as an option to turn off the frames is
supported. Any recommendation for the use of persistent cookies must be
justified and the rationale clearly described.
All Web site development efforts under this contract must comply fully with
the Section 508 provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). For
example, ASCII text files must be made available to be in compliance with the
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The NQMC Web nonframes/text only site
should be Bobby-approved and Lynx-compatible. (Bobby is a Web-based public
service offered by the Center for Applied Technology [CAST] that analyzes Web
pages for their accessibility to people with disabilities and their
compatibility with various browsers.) Under no circumstances will personally
identifiable information be gathered on NQMC users unless it is supplied
voluntarily by the user (e.g., E-mail communication).
The objectives of project are to:
- Establish and maintain an Internet-based NQMC containing detailed
information on quality measures.
- Design, develop, and maintain a database backbone and umbrella Web Site
that will house the NQMC as one module and be expandable to include additional
AHRQ clinical tool modules such as the NGC and others in subsequent efforts.
- Provide appropriate and timely technical assistance to NQMC users.
- Finalize and maintain the database structure that will house an enhanced
- Migration of an enhanced NGC consistent with a the new database
environment in the fourth quarter Fiscal Year 2003.
- Provide appropriate integration between different Internet-based AHRQ
clinical information and decision tool modules.
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Current as of June 2001