The Institut de Recherche en Santé de Surveillance Épidémiologique et de Formation (IRESSEF), through funding from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (U.S. CDC), is working to identify a partner to support, manage and possibly improve and existing open source Proficiency Testing (PT) data collection, management and analysis program. This is an online electronic PT (ePT) program which has been successfully tested and used for HIV-1 Viral Load (VL) and Early Infant Diagnosis (EID) Proficiency Testing (PT) programs by the International Lab Branch of the US CDC.

The PT panels of this program are composed of dried tube specimens (DTS) prepared from inactivated HIV-1 virus culture for VL PT and Dried Blood Spot (DBS) for EID PT. The panels are sent to the participants twice annually for both EID and VL PT programs by commercial curriers. PT is an essential component in a comprehensive laboratory quality assurance program. The selected partner will provide data collection and performance reporting support for VL/EID program using ePT; and possibly improve the system. The partner will be responsible for collecting PT performance data and feedback from participants. They will then share these data with CDC for evaluation. CDC will evaluate PT data and provide performance report to the partner for publishing using ePT. The partner will only publish performance reports after verification by CDC activity lead. All test data collected by ePT are from laboratory generated samples and not related to any patient and therefore do not contain any identifying information. The process workflow is enclosed for reference.

To support and possibly improve the U.S. CDC ILB VL/EID PT program in data collection and performance reporting.

3- Number of Contractor: One (1)

4- Scope of Work:
Data management support
• Ensure ePT functionality at all times
• Maintain confidentiality for all ePT user accounts
• Restrict access with password protected user
• Provide ePT system operation support to ILB
– Respond to ILB requests related to ePT within 48 hours
– Improve ePT system functionality as needed. For examples,
* A confirmation message is needed to inform participants that they have successfully entered the information on ePT.
* A password reset option is needed to allow PT participants to reset their password on their ePT account by themselves.
• Provide ePT system operation support to PT participants
• Respond to participants’ request related to ePT account within 48 hours
• Collect feedback and complaints from participants and provide solutions as needed
• Follow-up with participants to increase response rate and follow up with correction action to laboratories
with <100% score to help improved laboratory performance and PT score
• Collect PT results data and perform preliminarily analysis to send to CDC for approval within one week after PT panel due date from each round of PT
• Send report to participants after CDC approval
• Develop participants’ performance trend on ePT
• Develop a mobile app to access ePT via smartphone and tablet
• Assist with adding more PT provider sites and more PT schemes as needed
• Add new functionality and make necessary changes as recommended by CDC to support PT data collection and analysis
* IT support to manage and maintain ePT
* Maintain server with software updates
* Maintain server hardware
* Monitoring and performance tuning
* Ensure data security including routine data back-up and antivirus update
* Data backup and system restoration as and when needed
* Password reset and helpdesk support
• Provide support to other IT activities related to quality improvement HIV testing
• Provide support to all critical requests within 24 hours.
Support for transferring data management tools and technology to other PT providers
• Help in setting up ePT system for PT data management as requested by CDC
• Provide training to use data management tools as and when needed
• Provide knowledge transfer for ePT to PT providers
• Provide technical assistance as needed for ePT to PT providers for the duration of the contract.
• Enhance data management program as and when needed by PT providers
• Store data for 5 years after the end of this contract

5 General Requirements & Proposal Submission:
• Intellectual property: All information and assets related to the electronic system will be property of IRESSEF. The bidder must submit all documentation to IRESSEF upon successful launch and expiry of the contractual agreement.
• Proposals: The bidder must submit both technical and financial proposals for the project. The technical proposal must cover all important aspects of the solution and the financial proposal should cover development and support cost.

6- Deliverable
A fully functioning and customized open source system electronic that will enable the monitoring and tracking of specimen for performance of VL/EID laboratory tests.

7- Time line
August 10, 2019 to July 31, 2020

8- Total Approximate Budget: Not to exceed 5,000 USD

A potential contractor may compete for the project in a single application. Final selection for the project will be based on technical capacity and other considerations as deemed necessary by the scope of work. Proposed costing will also be considered as an additional basis for selection. IRESSEF shall enter into a contract with the selected contractor. Duration of contracts shall be up to a maximum of 12 months beginning on 10th August 2019.

A. The format of the submission, in response to this RFP, must include, but is not limited to, the following:
i. Background on the organization/individual and staffing qualifications and experience. Indicate how these qualifications and experience relate to the proposed functional areas applied for. Where the organization is affiliated/has partnerships with other institutions, a description of how this will result in effective implementation of the proposed areas of work should be included.
ii. A description of the respondent’s work history (experience) with similar projects in the past five (5) years (Capability Statement). This should include, but not limited to, a narrative description of the principal results achieved, how they were achieved and how those results related to the problem statement being addressed.
iii. How the Respondent proposes to accomplish the functional area (s). Include specific objectives and activities that will be done under each objective
iv. Expected outcomes and impact
B. Completed proposals shall consist of typewritten pages utilizing 12” font typing. A maximum of 10 pages for the proposal is allowed
C. The authorized individual representing the Respondent will sign and date the proposal cover sheet. The signatory agent’s printed name, title, name of the organization, address, phone and fax numbers and email address must be provided. Failure to provide a signed copy of the affirmation statement below will be cause for the proposal not to be considered.
I affirm that the information within this proposal, to the best of my knowledge, is true and accurate. Further, I am duly authorized to sign and submit this proposal on behalf of this agency. I fully affirm and understand that failure to meet the requirements of this proposal at the submitted price may result in my organization’s contract being terminated.
D. Include at least two (2) current references and their contact information from organizations that have used your services within the last twelve (12) months.
Send your completed application by email to Mimi Traoré-Mané at maimouna.traore@iressef.org on or before 31st July 2019 at 5:30pm East African Time.

A committee formed from staff and outside experts will evaluate the applications based on preset standards relevant to the specific project and its correlation with the RFP objectives. An evaluation matrix with assigned weighted numerical values will be used to rate each applicant. The following represents some, not all, of the criteria that will be used to the assessed feasibility of each Respondent.

  • Does the organization / individual have the right skill set and expertise to accomplish the required assignments?
  • Does the organization / individual demonstrate adequate and verifiable past experience in similar projects?Is the Respondent’s proposed activities (strategy of implementation) current, feasible and cost effective?
  • Are the proposed outcomes measurable and feasible?
  • Did the application include references that attest to the Respondents personal and professional integrity and competency?
  • Did the Respondent demonstrate knowledge of the project needs and objectives?

IRESSEF reserves the right (but is not under obligation to do so) to enter into discussions with one or more Respondents in order to obtain clarifications or additional details, to suggest service delivery refinements in the proposal or other aspects of the proposal, or to negotiate the cost proposal.
Each Respondent submitting a proposal will be notified in writing or via e-mail of the decision concerning their proposal. Should your organization be recommended for acceptance, the contract shall be effective on the contract execution date. All work must be scheduled and completed within the contract period timeframe. Any modifications or extensions must be negotiated in advance and submitted to IRESSEF for review and approval. The selected Respondent’s proposal, and any subsequent material submitted in response to requests for additional information, will become the basis of contractual agreements with said Respondent.

Responses must be in accordance with the guidelines as specified in this RFP. This RFP does not commit IRESSEF to accept any proposals submitted, nor is IRESSEF responsible for any costs incurred in the preparation of responses to this RFP. The detailed itemized budget must be submitted in U.S. dollars and will be evaluated in terms of best value to IRESSEF. IRESSEF reserves the right to delay, amend, reissue or cancel all or part of this RFP at any time without prior notice.
IRESSEF will be under no obligation to reveal or discuss with any Respondent on how a proposal was assessed, or to provide any other information relative to the selection process. Respondents whose proposals are not selected will be notified by email and shall have no claim whatsoever for any kind of compensation.