Spotlight: Innovation Partnership procurement process

This issue we’re placing the spotlight on a new and innovative procurement procedure recently undertaken by our procurement and projects teams.

Background: The innovation partnership procedure

The innovation partnership procedure was introduced on 26 February 2015 under the Public Contracts Regulations 2015. It allows a contracting authority to procure a provider(s) to work with it to research, develop and then exploit a service or supply that does not currently exist.

Case study: Greater Manchester Academic Health Science Network (GM AHSN)

GM AHSN is one of 15 Academic Health Science Networks across England established by NHS England in 2013 to connect the NHS, industry, the third sector, local authorities and academic organisations.

Hempsons has advised GM AHSN (hosted by Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust) on the procurement of an innovation partnership for the development and delivery of its ‘DataWell’ programme. We understand that this process is one of the first, if not the first, successfully concluded innovation partnership procurement processes in Europe.

What is Datawell?

Datawell, an informatics programme led by GM AHSN, is an innovative platform designed to provide local NHS organisations (across Greater Manchester, East Cheshire and East Lancashire) with a secure way to share health data between healthcare providers for patient benefit.

Users of DataWell will ultimately include NHS clinical commissioning groups, acute NHS trusts, NHS community trusts, local authorities and research institutions. During the initial three years of the partnership, the DataWell Exchange will be rolled out to enable the sharing of data by all member organisations. Work on at least two project-driven partnerships will also be commenced to explore opportunities for the best application and exploitation of the new technology.

GM AHSN has completed a Development and Services Agreement with Lumira Limited (who is leading a consortium of suppliers that includes IBM United Kingdom Limited and Ernst and Young LLP) that will see Lumira deliver GM AHSN’s vision for the integration of public sector health, social and research data throughout Greater Manchester, East Cheshire and East Lancashire.

How did Hempsons advise?

Andrew Daly, Partner and Oliver Crich, Solicitor, from Hempsons’ Procurement team provided procurement advice and support through all stages of the process, from drafting and advising on the issue of bespoke Invitation to Participate in Innovation Partnership documentation, through bidder negotiation meetings to evaluation and selection of preferred bidder in response to GM AHSN’s Final Tender. Hempsons’ Projects team worked on innovative contract documentation to reach a technical solution for this project.

Hempsons were invaluable in helping us to design this innovation partnership procurement, helping us to get the best out of the process and guiding us through the challenges of the whole process. We believe that, thanks to Hempsons, we have been able to put a strong partnership together that will allow us to help transform health and care services in Greater Manchester.

Gary Leeming, Director of Informatics for Greater Manchester Academic Health Science Network


For more detail regarding Hempsons’ experience of running this new process, please contact Andrew Daly or Oliver Crich.

Click here to read our newsbrief in full.

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