Contracting and Procurement

Contracting and Procurement

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15 March 2024

Procurement policy

Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent ICB have a responsibility to ensure a consistent, transparent and effective approach to the procurement, commissioning and contract management of goods, services and works.

The ICB has two Procurement polices.  One for healthcare and one for non-healthcare services.  The ICBs procurement policies outlines the key principles and considerations that will inform decision-making. The policies consider current competition and procurement rules attributable to both healthcare and non-healthcare services.  Both policies will be updated in line with any changes to UK/EU legislation and NHS Policy.

You can read through our Policies and Procedures on our webpage.

Provider Selection Regime for Healthcare Services

The Provider Selection Regime (PSR) came into force on 1 January 2024.

The PSR is a set of rules for procuring health care services in England by organisations termed relevant authorities. Relevant authorities are:

  • NHS England
  • Integrated care boards (ICBs)
  • NHS trusts and NHS foundation trusts
  • Local authorities and combined authorities

The PSR does not apply to the procurement of goods or non-health care services (unless as part of a mixed procurement), irrespective of whether these are procured by relevant authorities.

The PSR was introduced by regulations made under the Health and Care Act 2022. In keeping with the intent of the Act, the PSR has been designed to:

  • introduce a flexible and proportionate process for deciding who should provide health care services
  • provide a framework that allows collaboration to flourish across systems
  • ensure that all decisions are made in the best interest of patients and service users.

Awards of contracts

Transparency Notices

The ICB as a relevant authority is required to be transparent about their decision making under the PSR. This is to ensure that the system is fully informed about the decisions that are being taken.

The ICB publishes its transparency notices on the Find a Tender Service (FTS). 

Provider Representations

Following direct award process C, the most suitable provider process, or the competitive process and the publication of the intention to award a contract notice (transparency notice), a standstill period must be observed for eight working days. During this period representations can be made and responded to as appropriate. Representations should be made to

If no representations are received before midnight at the end of the 8th working day after the day the standstill period begins, the standstill period can come to an end, and the contract will be awarded to the selected provider.

Patient Choice Accreditation

Under National Choice Rules providers of consultant led services that meet the definition of choice have a right to a contract if they can pass the Integrated Care Boards’ (ICB) accreditation process and are able to deliver the ICBs’ service specification for that service. Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent ICB have a process for interested providers who wish to be accredited. The process is split into three phases:

  • Phase 1 - Accreditation

    All providers will be asked to register their request for accreditation via the Patient Choice Accreditation Inbox:

    The questionnaire will then be shared with the provider for completion confirming the next available date of a Choice Accreditation Panel. The purpose of the questionnaire is to assess providers against a standard set of questions to assure the ICB that the provider is suitable.

    This process will be similar to the process undertaken for competitive tenders and Any Qualified Provider (AQP) processes. Once the ICB receives the completed questionnaire it will be assessed by the Choice Accreditation Panel (CAP). This panel is not predetermined, but will be formed based on the subject matter expertise required.

  • Phase 2 - Service Specification

    As part of the accreditation questionnaire providers will be asked to indicate what services they wish to deliver. If the provider passes the accreditation process, they will be asked to demonstrate how they will deliver the service specification relevant to the service they wish to provide. This will then be further assessed to ensure the service model is compliant with the service specification. This will be achieved via assessment of the response and confirmation to the provider within a six-week period and a contract will be established.

  • Phase 3 - Contract Award

    If both the above processes are complete and the provider is deemed suitable and able to deliver services on behalf of the ICB a contract will be awarded.

Contracts Register

All contracts from the six Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent CCGs legacy organisations were transferred to NHS Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent ICB on 1 July 2022. The ICB’s contracts register is a dynamic document which is continuously reviewed to ensure it is accurate and reflective of the newly established statutory body.

The ICB’s contract register is published at the end of each financial quarter.  However, please note that work in relation to the register is ongoing.

You can search for all of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent ICB contracts that are currently out for tender on the Contracts Finder website. 

You can find out standard terms and conditions for the supply of services on the NHS England and NHS Improvement website.