In 2017, NHS England and the Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner (OPCC) wanted to build on and improve joint funding arrangements for the Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC)
This was in line with national guidance, which supported collaborative commissioning arrangements. The aim was to provide county-wide coverage and a consistent service.
The SARC provides a ‘hub’ of information and advice for victims of sexual assault and abuse as well as coordinating services for them.
Following a successful procurement exercise, the contract was awarded to Safer Communities. The contract was for three years with an option to extend for a further year
During 2020, NHS England decided to re-contract SARC to include forces across the North East and Cumbria. This contract would start at the end of the initial contract.
As a result, the OPCC needed to procure a separate independent sexual violence advisor service (ISVA.)
The OPCC carried out procurement via open tender using the EU Supply Tender Portal. That meant all interested bidders could access tender documentation and submit a bid.
Full details of the procurement process are attached to this decision notice. The OPCC has decided to award the contract to Bidder 1.