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Number of HSE procurement contracts almost doubles

The value of the 2015 contracts was €707.1 million compared with €414 million the previous year.

The number of contracts awarded in 2015 and the value of these contracts were the highest in the eight years of procurement data provided to Deputy Cullinane. 

The figures show in 2008 only 12 contracts were awarded at a value of €5.1 million.In 2009, 124 contacts were awarded (€382.2 million); which increased to 183 awards in 2010 (€339.4 million); 243 in 2011 (€623.7 million); 358 in 2012 (€290 million); and 254 in 2013 (€471.2 million).So far in 2016 296 contracts have been awarded to the value of €200.8 million.

According to the HSE, these figures, however, do not include contracts that are put in place at local or regional level, nor in the voluntary sector, as the Executive does not have access to these figures. 

“We are currently working with all of these agencies to include all procurement requirements in the future three-year rolling plan,” according to the HSE.

In a separate PQ, Deputy Cullinane asked about breaches of public procurement policy by the HSE, but the Executive did not provide any details of these cases. 

Following a presentation by the Comptroller and Auditor General in July, Deputy Cullinane stated level of non-competitive procurement in the HSE is alarming in its scale with serious cost consequences for the State and for struggling local businesses.

Deputy Cullinane said:“The Comptroller and Auditor General said today at the Public Accounts Committee that 30 per cent of procurement contracts in the HSE are non-competitive. That is a shocking figure.The C&AG said that it was an exceptional problem, and if it is exceptional then it is systemic.This means that small to medium-size businesses are effectively locked out of a significant number of HSE procurement contracts. This has a knock-on effect in terms of local and regional development, and stifles attempts to bring a fair balance to investment across the State.”

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