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National Quality Measures Clearinghouse

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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 20852

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, at

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 tool modules.

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 systems.

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 cost-effective.

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:

  1. Establish and maintain an Internet-based NQMC containing detailed information on quality measures.
  2. 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.
  3. Provide appropriate and timely technical assistance to NQMC users.
  4. Finalize and maintain the database structure that will house an enhanced NGC.
  5. Migration of an enhanced NGC consistent with a the new database environment in the fourth quarter Fiscal Year 2003.
  6. Provide appropriate integration between different Internet-based AHRQ clinical information and decision tool modules.

Downloading Information

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Current as of June 2001

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


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