17 Governance and administration Procurement costs Each bidder will be responsible for its own costs incurred throughout each stage of the procurement process. Neither the PCT, the EoE Strategic Health Authority or the Department of Health will be responsible for any costs incurred by any bidder or any other person through this process. The Public Contract Regulations 2006 The services to which this prospectus relates fall within Part B of Schedule 3 to the Public Contracts Regulations 2006 and Annex II B to Council Directive 2004/ 18/ EC. Neither the inclusion of a bidder selection stage nor the use of the term " Pre- Qualification Questionnaire" ( PQQ) nor any other indication shall be taken to mean that the PCT intends to hold itself bound by any of the Regulations, save those applicable to Part B services. Conflicts of interest In order to ensure a fair and competitive procurement process, the PCT requires that all actual or potential conflicts of interest that a potential bidder may have are identified and resolved to the satisfaction of the PCT. Potential bidders should notify the PCT of any actual or potential conflict( s) of interest in their response to the PQQ. If the potential bidder becomes aware of an actual or potential conflict of interest following submission of the PQQ it should immediately notify the PCT via email to glenn. gooch@ swessex. nhs. uk . Any notifications should provide details of the actual or potential conflict of interest. If, following consultation with the potential bidder or bidders, actual or potential conflict( s) are not resolved to the satisfaction of the PCT, then the PCT reserves the right to exclude at any time any potential bidder or bidders from the procurement process should any actual or potential conflict( s) of interest be found by the PCT to confer an unfair competitive advantage on one or more potential bidder( s), or otherwise to undermine a fair and competitive procurement process. Non- collusion and canvassing Each bidder must neither disclose to, nor discuss with any other potential bidder, or bidder ( whether directly or indirectly), any aspect of any response to any PCT procurement documents ( see page 21).
18 Each bidder or potential bidder must not canvass or solicit or offer any gift or consideration whatsoever as an inducement or reward to any officer or employee of, or person acting as an adviser to, either the NHS or the Department of Health in connection with the selection of bidders or the provider in relation to the PCT procurement. Freedom of information The PCT is committed to open government and meeting its legal responsibilities under the Freedom of Information Act ( FOIA). Accordingly, any information created by or submitted to the PCT may need to be disclosed by the PCT in response to a request for information. In making a submission or bid or corresponding with the PCT at any stage of the procurement, each potential bidder, bidder and each relevant organisation acknowledges and accepts that the PCT may be obliged under the FOIA to disclose any information provided to it: . Without consulting the potential bidder or bidder; or . Following consultation with the potential bidder or bidder and having taken its views into account. Potential bidders and bidders must clearly identify any information supplied in response to the PCT PQQ or the ITT that they consider to be confidential or commercially sensitive and attach a brief statement of the reasons why such information should be so treated and for what period. Where it is considered that disclosing information in response to a FOIA request could cause a risk to the procurement process or prejudice the commercial interests of any potential bidder or bidder, the PCT may wish to withhold such information under the relevant FOIA exemption. However, potential bidders should be aware that the PCT is responsible for determining at its absolute discretion whether the information requested falls within an exemption to disclosure, or whether it must be disclosed. Potential bidders should therefore note that the receipt by the PCT of any information marked " confidential" or equivalent does not mean that the PCT accepts any duty of confidence by virtue of that marking, and that the PCT has the final decision regarding the disclosure of any such information in response to a request for information.