Skip Navigation U.S. Department of Health and Human Services www.hhs.gov
Agency for Healthcare Research Quality www.ahrq.gov
Archive print banner
Accelerating Change and Transformation in Organizations and Networks (ACTION II)

This information is for reference purposes only. It was current when produced and may now be outdated. Archive material is no longer maintained, and some links may not work. Persons with disabilities having difficulty accessing this information should contact us at: https://info.ahrq.gov. Let us know the nature of the problem, the Web address of what you want, and your contact information.

Please go to www.ahrq.gov for current information.

Questions and Answers

1. Partnership Composition and Characteristics

Are these 12 new sites that AHRQ is funding? Who is eligible to apply for this particular contract? Specifically, will only those who previously participated in ACTION be considered?

An entirely new set of approximately 12 to 15 contracts will be awarded under ACTION II. Offerors do not need to have previously participated in ACTION to be eligible to apply under ACTION II. Current ACTION Partnerships are eligible to re-apply; however, being a current ACTION partner bestows no advantage on an offeror organization.

Can an organization be the Lead on one submission and a partner on another?

Lead organizations may not be listed as members of any other Partnerships. However, once master contract awards have been made, any Lead organization may serve as a subcontractor to any other Partnership on an ad hoc basis on one or more Task Orders.

Non-prime organizations may be listed as members of multiple Partnerships in proposals submitted in response to this Request for Proposals (RFP), and/or may subcontract on an ad hoc basis (on individual future Task Orders) to more than one Partnership.

What is the difference between being named on an application vs. being brought in on an ad hoc basis when a Task Order is issued?

Note that proposals submitted in response to this contract RFP are referred to as submissions rather than applications (a term used for grants). In the "ACTION II Characteristics" section of the RFP Statement of Work, it is stated that Partnerships will be permitted the freedom to partner with diverse organizations or stakeholder groups on an "as needed" basis. Partnerships should decide at the outset (i.e., for this submission) which capabilities they are likely to need on a continuing basis and then include in their Partnerships the organizations/individuals who will most likely be called upon to fulfill these needs throughout the period of performance. However, in the future, Partnerships may wish to subcontract with organizations, as necessary, to meet the needs of specific Requests for Task Orders (RFTOs). That is, there may be organizations/individuals that the Partnership may prefer to seek out later on a case-by-case basis to enable it to compete for, and successfully complete, specific Task Orders throughout the contractual timeline.

Can two organizations develop a bid to be co-primes or is only a single entity allowed to be the prime?

Two organizations can not be co-primes. Only a singly entity may be the prime and hold the master contract.

How will AHRQ consider special populations in ACTION II? Will they be built into many of the Task Orders, will there be some that are specifically targeted, or both?

The needs of AHRQ's priority populations, as defined in the RFP, are expected to be addressed in many RFTOs. Sometimes one or more priority populations (children, the elderly, women, and individuals affected by low income, who belong to racial/ethnic minorities, who live in rural areas, who are disabled, or have special needs) will be specifically targeted in an RFTO.

Is this grant available to privately owned companies who provide health services or only non-profit organizations?

This is not a grant solicitation. Selected organizations will serve as contractors not grantees. Both non-profit and for-profit entities may submit proposals in response to this RFP.

2. Past Performance

Clarification from AHRQ: A number of questions referred to the requirements regarding Past Performance as specified in Section L.11 of the RFP and as further discussed in the "Frequently Asked Questions" section. Most of these questions requested clarification of the following:

  • The number of past and/or current contracts and/or subcontracts that must be listed.
  • Whether a separate listing must be included for the prime and each subcontractor.
  • Whether Past Performance Questionnaires/Performance Forms must be submitted for each contract listed.

To clarify the requirements of the RFP, we hereby amend the text for item (1) of Section L.11 as follows. We believe that this revised wording should answer all the above questions regarding Past Performance.

Offerers shall submit the following information (original and five copies) as part of their proposal:

(1) For each Partnership as an entity, a list and brief description of five to 10 contracts/subcontracts completed during the past 3 years and/or that are currently ongoing. Contracts listed may include those entered into by the Federal Government, agencies of State and local governments, and commercial customers. Contracts listed may include those undertaken individually by the prime organization, individually by one or more member organizations, or as collaborative endeavors among some or all of the member organizations.

Offerors that are newly formed entities without prior contracts as entities should list their most relevant contracts/subcontracts for which key personnel were responsible. If offerors have no contract experience, experience with grants will be considered; however, AHRQ has a strong preference for contract experience.

Include the following information for each contract/subcontract that is listed:

  1. Name of contract/subcontract activity.
  2. Contract/subcontract number.
  3. Contract/subcontract type.
  4. Total contract/subcontract dollar value.
  5. Purpose and results/products of the contract/subcontract work.
  6. Contracting Officer and telephone number.
  7. Program Manager and telephone number.
  8. Administrative Contracting Officer, if different from item f, and telephone number.
  9. For contract, list of major subcontracts.

Section L.11, items (2) and (3), and the first paragraph of item (4), remain unchanged.

The final paragraph of L.11 (4) is amended to read:

The Past Performance Questionnaire and Contractor Performance Forms (Attachment 1) shall be completed by five of the contracting organizations listed in item (1) above.

The evaluation forms shall be completed and forwarded directly to Nicola Carmichael, the ACTION II Contracting Officer. Evaluation forms must be received by 12:00 EST, March 23, 2010, 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 Contracting Officer.

Further note from AHRQ: Several questions about Past Performance requested guidance on which contracts to list (e.g., relative importance of listing contracts being performed by the prime [or even a particular unit of the prime organization] vs. subcontractors; the extent to which the offeror organization can/should rely on partner organizations for the Past Performance information; the relative merits of listing the most relevant vs. the most recent contracts). To assist offerors in deciding which contracts to list, we provide the following elucidation of the purpose/rationale of the "Past Performance" section:

The submission of Past Performance information is intended to help AHRQ understand and assess, to the extent possible, the Partnership's capacity to produce high-quality ACTION II Task Order deliverables within the budgets and time frames to be specified in future Task Order contracts. AHRQ will assess how effectively the members of each Partnership have performed implementation research and worked on ACTION II-type contracts, as well as whether they have experience in working collaboratively with one another. We recommend that Partnerships select recent examples of performance with a view to providing the best evidence for: 1) experience with ACTION II-type implementation research, preferably conducted for the Federal Government; and 2) prior contract collaborative work among the organizations involved in the Partnership. Each Partnership is encouraged to succinctly provide the most relevant Past Performance information.

Because of the varying size and types of experience of the Partnerships and their member organizations, we are inviting offerors to list and briefly describe up to 10 past or ongoing contracts, although only five are required (and Past Performance Forms/Questionnaires must be provided for five, and only five, of the total contracts listed). We urge offerors to be selective in including information and to consider content and relevance ahead of quantity, in order to avoid overly burdening reviewers.

Is there a page limit and required font size for the Past Performance section?

Past Performance Questionnaires and Contractor Performance Forms (see Attachment 1 in the RFP) have no page or font size restrictions. These forms are completed by the external contracting organizations that have been selected by the submitting Partnership as references. The forms are sent directly to the Contracting Officer, as described in Section L.11. Any other information provided by the Partnership about past performance is included in the Technical Proposal and must conform to its font and spacing requirements.

How many electronic copies of the Past Performance section should be submitted in addition to the one original and five copies?

Only one original and five hard copies of this section should be submitted.

3. Contract Period/Funding Level

Please clarify the length of the Base Period, how many Option Periods there will be, and the length of each Option Period.

There will be a 3-year Base Period and one 2-year Option Period.

Please clarify what the estimated minimum and maximum award amounts will be for the Base Period and for each Option Period and whether these amounts apply to all of ACTION II, an individual Partnership, or an individual Task Order.

Thank you for bringing an error in the RFP to AHRQ's attention. Section B.2 (Task Orders) states that it is anticipated that the maximum total amount awarded will be $4,500,000 for the Base Period and 3,000,000 for the Option Periods. This is not correct.

Funding levels for ACTION II are as follows:

The minimum amount that will be available to fund all ACTION II Task Orders is currently expected to be $1.15 million per year for each of the 3 Base Period years and each of the 2 Option Period years. This represents the total amount of annual core funding available to ACTION II. The minimum award that will be made available to each individual Partnership is $25,000, which covers certain specified administrative costs, as detailed in Section H.14 of the RFP. Typical Task Orders for which ACTION II Partnerships will be competing are expected to range from $250,000 to $500,000—but may be larger (as evidenced by recent ACTION Task Orders).

The maximum amount that will be available to fund all ACTION II projects annually is difficult to estimate. The maximum amount will be the sum of the core $1.15 million (mentioned above), plus funding from individual AHRQ Portfolios, plus (in a limited number of cases) external funding (e.g., from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). Based on recent experience from ACTION, this combined funding is estimated to be approximately $20,000,000 per year for each of the 3 Base Period years and each of the 2 Option Period years, with an estimated total of $60,000,000 for the Base Period and $40,000,000 for the Option Period.

4. Partnership Capabilities

On page 16, the RFP specifies that cost proposals must include personnel hours and costs for activities such as Office of Management and Budget (OMB) clearance and compliance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Please clarify what is required in the cost proposal in terms of personnel hours for these "support and technical assistance" services.

This section refers to costs that must be included in the cost proposal in bids submitted by ACTION II awardees in response to future individual RFTO solicitations. These costs will vary depending on the requirements of specific Task Orders. Personnel hours for such tasks do not need to be included in the proposals submitted in response to this RFP.

The RFP specifies that proposals must identify "individual(s) designated to ensure compliance with relevant Federal laws, regulations, and other requirements." Please clarify to which specific Federal laws and requirements this refers.

At present, this specifically refers to Institutional Review Board, Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, OMB, Section 508, and American Recovery and Reinvestment Act requirements. There is the possibility that other requirements may arise as well.

On page 21, is "conducting practice-based implementation research" a collective requirement or must each collaborator and prime be an expert in this area?

Each Partnership must have experience in conducting practice-based implementation research. While this is not a requirement for each member organization, the Partnerships that will have the greatest chance of securing master contracts, and subsequently being awarded Task Orders, are those which include collaborators who also have experience with this kind of research.

Please clarify what is meant by the requirement that partners be "in a position to reach and influence or have already reached and influenced specific AHRQ target audiences."

As defined in the RFP, AHRQ target audiences include clinical, health care provider, purchaser/business, policy, and consumer/patient decisionmakers. The goal of ACTION II is to measurably improve the effectiveness, safety, quality, and efficiency of health care in the United States. To achieve this goal, we must reach and influence target audiences and actually change the way that health care is delivered. Partners that are in a position to reach and influence decisionmakers may, for example, be organizations with constituencies or memberships (e.g., trade and professional associations, schools of medicine, nursing or pharmacy, consumer advocacy groups) that can facilitate the dissemination of findings and encourage adoption of new innovations. Examples of past reach and influence include the widespread use of evidence-based strategies to reduce infections in hospitals, the development and application of training curricula to improve medical team communication and improve patient safety, and the development and broad dissemination via professional organizations of tools to help pharmacists improve patients' health literacy and help patients understand how to take their medications correctly. In other words, while publication of research findings or results in peer-reviewed literature and presentations at health care delivery conferences are important avenues for dissemination, they will not be sufficient for the purposes of ACTION II in regard to reach and influence. Partnerships should identify other ways that they intend to reach and influence target audiences.

5. Definitions of Terms

Please define what is meant by the target audience of "consumer/patient decisionmakers."

Consumer/patient decisionmakers include users of health care delivery services, patient advocacy groups, family care givers and other individuals who represent the interests of recipients and potential recipients of health care.

What is the distinction between a clinical audience and a health care provider?

An example of a clinical audience might be a professional association. A health care provider is a person such as a physician, nurse, pharmacist, dentist, or other care giver who provides health care directly to a patient.

On page 22, the RFP requests that respondents provide evidence of commitment and engagement of operational leaders. Please define "operational leaders."

For the purpose of this RFP, operational leaders include decisionmakers in health care delivery organizations who hold positions of influence for other staff, such as Chief Executive Officers, Chief Informatics Officers, Chief Medical Officers and Chief Financial Officers.

6. Technical Proposal Structure and Organization

Should the demonstration of in-kind contributions appear in the Technical Proposal, Business Proposal, or both?

The demonstration of in-kind contributions should appear in the Technical Proposal.

The wording and order of the performance requirements specified in Section C (pages 17-20) is different from the instructions for demonstrating the ability to meet them (pages 21-22), and both are different from the Proposal Requirements Checklist/Page Locator (Appendix 6). Is there a preference for which list offerors should follow when discussing and presenting qualifications and capabilities to meet the requirements?

Offerors are urged to read all sections referring to Performance Requirements carefully and to be as thorough as possible in assessing for themselves and demonstrating to AHRQ their ability to meet them. Toward that end:

  • Pages 17 to 20 are designed to alert offerors to what is expected of them as ACTION II contractors in order to help them assess their own capabilities and chances of succeeding.
  • Pages 20 to 22 are designed to answer anticipated questions from offerors about what reviewers expect to see from them as evidence of their suitability, abilities, and capabilities.
  • Appendix 6 is intended primarily to help reviewers, but can also help offerors perform an additional check for completeness. However, because it is a checklist, it is by definition a distilled version of the requirements and should not be considered a substitute for the more comprehensive discussion of the requirements covered in pages 17 to 22.

Given that there is some overlap between the "Technical Approach" and the "Organizational Experience" sections, is there a preferred structure or organization for the Technical Proposal?

There is no preferred structure or organization for the Technical Proposal. AHRQ recommends that each Partnership structure its submission so as to make the best case for itself, in part by demonstrating its ability to present and organize an enormous amount of information clearly and effectively.

In its appendices, the RFP requests a number of matrices. Does AHRQ have a preference for the location of these matrices in the response?

AHRQ does not have a preference as to the location of the matrices.

7. Questions About Page Limits/Mechanics/Delivery

Please clarify what is and is not included in the 100 page limit for the Technical Proposal.

The following parts of the Technical Proposal are excluded from the 100 page limit:

  • Cover letter or cover page.
  • Transmittal letter.
  • Table of contents.
  • List of exhibits.
  • Letters of commitment.
  • Personnel biographical sketches.

The elements listed above are the only pieces that will not be counted toward the 100-page limit. Everything else that is included to document a Partnership's ability to meet the technical requirements will be counted toward the 100-page limit, including but not limited to: the introduction and all appendices, graphics, tables, and charts.

Is documentation of subcontracting/consulting arrangements included in the 100-page limit?

Any discussion of subcontracting/consulting arrangements included in the Business Proposal does not count toward the 100-page limit. However, any discussion of such matters that is included in the Technical Proposal (e.g., to demonstrate how member organizations enhance the versatility or strength of a Partnership) will count toward the 100-page limit.

Are there page limits for the Past Performance section and/or the Business Proposal?

There is no page limit for either of these sections.

Are key personnel curricula vitae (CVs), although not included in the 100-page limit, subject to the font and spacing requirements of the Technical Proposal?

Note that the RFP requests maximum 10-page biographical sketches rather than traditional CVs. These "bios" should stress the experience and qualifications most relevant to the type of work the individual would be likely to undertake under ACTION II. As noted, these bios are not included in the 100-page limit and do not need to be double spaced. They should be typed in at least size 11 font.

Section L.10 specifies that the Technical Proposal use no less than size 11 font. Can offerors use a smaller font for graphics, tables, charts, and similar materials, as long as it is legible?

All materials should use a size 11 font, unless that size prevents table rows or columns from aligning properly.

On page 78, the RFP states that "appendices are to be provided electronically in MS Office format on compact disk, in the same quantity as the Technical Proposal." Please confirm the required quantities.

Please provide one original and 12 hard copies of the Appendices.

Does AHRQ receive FedEx deliveries?

Yes, FedEx delivers to AHRQ.

8. Documentation Requirements

Are bios for all personnel required or for key personnel only?

As stated in Section L.10, brief biographic sketches (less than 10 pages in length) that provide the relevant qualifications necessary for this effort are required only for key personnel.

Please describe the difference between a Notice of Intent, Letter of Commitment, and Letter of Intent.

A "Notice of Intent" is required for each Lead organization that submits a proposal in response to this RFP. Notices of Intent are due by March 1, 2010. If there is any chance at all that an organization will apply to be the Lead for an ACTION II Partnership, then that organization must file a Notice of Intent. In early March, a list of organizations that have submitted Notices of Intent will be publicly posted to allow organizations to identify other entities with whom they might wish to collaborate.

A Letter of Commitment from operational leaders of prime and member organizations of each Partnership is recommended in order to demonstrate that the leaders of all participating organizations are aware of, and support, their organization's participation in ACTION II. These letters allow AHRQ and proposal reviewers to gauge the level of engagement, commitment, and enthusiasm that these organizations will bring to their research endeavors. There is no specific number of letters suggested or required. Each Partnership should determine how many such letters to include in order to make a strong case for itself.

A Letter of Intent from all proposed consultants and subcontractors indicates their awareness of all planned subcontracting and consulting relationships and states their intention to carry out work under Task Orders.

Please define the differences between the designations of subcontractor, partner, and consultant.

A Partnership consists of more than one collaborating organization. The Lead organization that submits the proposal is frequently referred to in this RFP as the prime partner. The prime partner in an ACTION II Partnership is sometimes referred to also as the master contractor. Other partners included in the Partnership are often referred to as subcontractors. Consultants are generally individuals included in a Task Order to provide expertise on a particular topic.

Are prime and/or partner organizations required to submit a sample scope of work or budget in addition to the salary structure?

There is no sample scope of work or budget required for this RFP. The RFP requires the inclusion of certified, unloaded labor rates for individuals expected to work on ACTION II Task Orders and an existing or proposed indirect cost rate agreement.

In the cover letter, the RFP requests the number of hours proposed for each individual per task. However, there are no specific tasks for this master contract proposal. Please clarify what is required in terms of personnel hours per task.

The RFP cover letter does not request the number of hours proposed for individuals per task. It is correct that there are no specific tasks for this master contract proposal. Personnel hours must be specified in all future proposals submitted by ACTION II partners in response to specific RFTOs.

9. Expected Content of ACTION Research

Is this a continuation of previous years' research or can offerors submit their own concept papers for review?

Concept papers should not be included in submissions in response to this RFP. Offerors are invited to describe the types of research they are most interested in and best positioned to undertake. ACTION II does not favor continuing research. Offerors are encouraged to read "Topics for Research" (under the section titled "ACTION II Characteristics") for a description of the broad topics that are likely to be of interest to AHRQ and the methods that AHRQ will use to identify topics for ACTION II research.

It appears that bioterrorism and emergencies is not addressed in AHRQ's current areas of priority. Is this topic category part of the Task Order?

This is not a topic for which AHRQ contract funds have been committed in the past, although other organizations have supported ACTION Task Orders on this topic. It is not known if such funds will be committed in the future.

The RFP specifies that a criterion for selection is "experience and understanding of task order contracting." Should the Lead organization have this experience or can it be provided by one or more of the main partner organizations?

It is highly recommended that the Lead organization have contracting experience, since it will hold the master contract. The Lead organization and AHRQ each have legal, contractual responsibilities to each other. In addition, the Lead organization has legal, contractual responsibility for the performance of its subcontractors on individual Task Orders.

In ACTION, what was the percentage of approved Task Orders originating from a Partnership rather than AHRQ? Of those concepts formulated by a Partnership, how many were sole sourced vs. competitively bid?

In the current RFP, in the Section titled "ACTION II Characteristics," it is stated that ACTION II will focus on practical, applied topics of high interest to: the Department of Health and Human Services and AHRQ's Portfolios (see Appendix 2), the Partners' own operational leaders and champions, other individuals/organizations making critical decisions and managing change, and other users/stakeholders. AHRQ intends to use various mechanisms (e.g., Requests for Information, E-mail queries, input from the ACTION II Steering Committee, input from a call for ACTION II concepts) to solicit user input on Task Order topics and ensure that they are feasible, of high priority, and ready for implementation or dissemination. In past years, ACTION has competitively solicited proposals for approximately 80% of its RFTOs. The number of concepts initiated by Partnerships that have resulted in RFTOs varies from year to year.

How many hours on average are required or estimated for each Task Order?

Task Orders vary widely in scope of work, cost and period of performance. Thus, it is not possible to answer this question in a meaningful way.

10. GSA/MOBIS

Is a General Services Administration (GSA) Mission Oriented Business Integration Services (MOBIS) Schedule contract sufficient documentation of an "indirect cost rate agreement"?

A GSA MOBIS Schedule contract is sufficient documentation of an indirect cost rate agreement. A copy of the agreement should be provided with the proposal.

Can offerors use GSA's Web application, "eOffer," to submit proposals?

No. Please refer to Part 1, Section A, of the RFP.

The RFP specifies that the offeror must have a cost accounting system in place that "allows for the collection, tracking, and reporting of all costs under a cost reimbursement-type contract." If an offeror's accounting system is not a cost account system as defined by Cost Accounting Standards (CAS), what will satisfy the cost accounting system requirements?

A GSA Schedule contract is sufficient documentation of an indirect cost rate agreement. If an offeror has an established Government contract for which their cost accounting system has been approved, then this is acceptable.

11. Small Businesses

How can Small Business owners find prime organizations in order to become subcontractors?

Once all Letters of Intent have been received, a list of all prime organizations will be posted to the Web site (http://www.fbo.gov).

12. Costs/Cost Accounting/Labor Rates

The RFP states that each participant in a Partnership must have an established indirect cost rate. Please clarify what is meant by "establishing an indirect cost rate" and whether it must be obtained within 90 days.

The process for negotiating final indirect cost rates must be initiated within 90 days of a Task Order award. The rates themselves do not need to be actually established within 90 days.

In Section B.3, the RFP refers to four Labor Category Class levels. However, the RFP previously states that there are six Class levels. Please clarify the number of Labor Category Class levels.

Section B.3 is revised to read as follows:

The correct number of Labor Category Class levels are six (Class I to Class VI).

Please provide guidance on the skills and experiences expected for each Labor Category Class.

Proposed staff shall be identified by the following six classes:

Class I: Senior management personnel, normally holding an advanced degree, with a minimum of 10 years experience in conducting analytical/program research, evaluation and strategic planning types of activities, preferably with significant experience in health services research and analytical and/or managerial experience. This class of personnel should also have high-level management experience that reflects an ability to command organizational resources and direct staff within the broader organization.

Class II: Associate management or professional personnel, normally holding an advanced degree, with a minimum of 5 years experience in conducting analytical/program research, evaluation, and/or strategic planning activities. This class of personnel should also have experience in health services research.

Class III: Intermediate technical personnel, normally holding a Bachelor's degree, with a minimum of 3 years experience in technical activities, of which at least 2 are relevant to areas related to AHRQ's work. This class of personnel is capable of carrying out independent assignments with minimum supervision or acting as leaders of small projects. This class includes specialists in computer programming and survey design.

Class IV: Junior analysts, normally holding a Bachelor's degree, with 3 years or less experience in technical activities. This class of personnel includes research assistants and junior personnel who regularly assist analysts and specialists on routine technical work, such as data collection.

Class V: Other technical staff such as editors.

Class VI: Secretaries/typists.

If the offeror proposes to use consultants or subcontractors to carry out any of the work under this Task Order contract, the management plan shall specify how the contractor, consultants, and/or subcontractors will work together, how tasks will be divided, how decisions will be made and communicated, how activities will be coordinated, and how quality assurance will be accomplished. The offeror shall provide written assurance from proposed consultants or subcontractors that they have agreed to provide consultation to the offeror during the contract period.

The offeror's proposed Partnership Director shall be clearly identified. This individual is required to be qualified as Class I personnel and shall possess strong management experience and leadership skills, as well as high-level management experience. The Partnership Director is expected to devote a significant amount of time to the overall management of this Task Order contract including coordination and cooperation with Government staff and policy officials, direction and oversight of all studies awarded under the task order contract, and assuring quality of work performed.

Section H.14 states that "the cost and fee for each Task Order will be negotiated based on the fixed maximum labor rates set forth in Section B ("Supplies and Services") and on other cost/fee issues." Section B requests rate ranges that are NOT loaded rates. Please clarify what is meant in Section H.14.

The negotiated labor rates will not be fixed rates. AHRQ will use the negotiated rate ranges provided in the contract.

Section B.3 stipulates that unloaded rate ranges for Labor Classes I to IV must be provided. Please provide guidance on how participating commercial subcontractors that do not operate under "cost plus" cost principles can express category pricing.

All prime contractors and subcontractors must provide some "cost plus" information because of AHRQ's salary rate limitations. AHRQ is required to verify subcontractors' unloaded labor rates.

Who is responsible for meeting the cost accounting requirements?

Both the prime and partners are responsible for the cost accounting requirements.

Are there exceptions to the maximum labor rate for consultants of $1,000/day or the salary cap of $199,700?

AHRQ's salary cap applies to all employees under the prime contract and any subcontractors, including physicians. The maximum daily labor rate for consultants will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

13. Missing Elements/Inconsistencies

Is there information missing from the top of page 119?

Please disregard the top of page 119.

Was page 129 intentionally left blank?

Yes.

Is Appendix 3 incomplete?

Yes. Please refer to the revised Appendix 3 posted on February 25, 2010.

Is Appendix 7 missing?

Yes. Please refer to the revised Appendix 7, posted on February 25, 2010.

14. Additional Questions

Is there a possibility that the due date for questions will be extended?

No additional time will be permitted for questions.

15. Contracts

Section H.14 states that Task Orders may be awarded on a cost reimbursement or fixed price basis, while Section L.4 states that Task Orders will be awarded on a cost reimbursement or completion basis. Please clarify.

AHRQ assumes that the majority of the Task Orders will be cost reimbursement contracts; however, there may be cases in which fixed price or performance-based award fees are more appropriate.

Is a subcontract required for partner organizations other than the prime?

Yes, a subcontract is required.

If an offeror has in the past created a product that other health care providers participate in (such as a database), would that contract be evaluated individually (i.e., for each participant) or as one single contract?

This type of scenario would be evaluated as one single contract.

16. Software Development

Section H.13 states that contractors must work within the System Development Life Cycle (SDLC) framework. Does this requirement apply only to software/system development or beyond?

The SDLC requirement applies to all aspects of all Task Orders.

17. Business Proposal Documentation

What business documentation is required for partners other than the prime contractor?

All elements of the business proposal listed on page 1 are required for each core partner/major subcontractor.

18. Proprietary Products

Will AHRQ be considering proprietary products in this solicitation?

ACTION II will not be awarding contracts to perform research to develop or enhance proprietary materials. Deliverables resulting from the investment of Federal tax dollars in contract Task Orders are owned by the Federal Government.

Current as of February 25, 2010

 

The information on this page is archived and provided for reference purposes only.

 

AHRQ Advancing Excellence in Health Care