Published date: 27 February 2019

Closed early engagement

Closing date: 31 March 2019

Contract summary


  • Health services - 85100000

Location of contract

East of England

Procurement reference


Published date

27 February 2019

Closing date

31 March 2019

Contract is suitable for SMEs?


Contract is suitable for VCSEs?



England Midlands & East (Central Midlands) would like to inform potential Providers of a potential procurement that will take place late 2019 / early 2020 for Diabetic Eye Screening Procurement for NHS England Midlands & East (Central Midlands) which will cover the following geographical locations:
• Hertfordshire
• Bedfordshire
• Buckinghamshire
• Milton Keynes

Purpose of Service
The Diabetic Eye Screening programme seeks to reduce the risk of sight loss amongst people with diabetes by the prompt identification and effective treatment, if necessary, of sight threatening diabetic retinopathy at the appropriate stage during the disease process. Screening events for persons with diabetes may comprise:
- Routine digital screening - first stage of the screening pathway, where digital images are obtained, graded and a referral outcome is decided;
- Digital surveillance - the pathway under which a person with diabetes requires monitoring on a more frequent basis than annual routine digital screening but there is no current requirement for the person with diabetes to be referred to hospital eye services (HES); and
- Slit lamp biomicroscopy (SLB) surveillance - the method of screening people with diabetes for whom adequate retinal examination cannot be obtained by retinal photography.

Service Objectives / Requirements
This will be achieved by delivering evidence-based, population-based screening programmes that:
• identify the eligible population and ensure effective service delivery designed to optimise uptake of service,
• are safe, effective, externally and independently monitored, quality assured, and put meeting the patient's clinical needs at the heart of the service offer,
• lead to earlier detection, appropriate referral, effective treatment and improved outcomes,
• are delivered and supported by suitably trained, competent, qualified, clinical and non-clinical staff who, where relevant, participate in recognised on-going Continuous Professional Development (CPD), and Quality Assurance (QA) schemes,
• have effective Quality Assurance and audit arrangements embedded in the service.
Service Specification
To ensure a consistent and equitable approach to the provision and monitoring of NHS Diabetic Eye Screening Programmes (NDESP) across England, the local specification is consistent with the national service specification.

The service specification for the NDESP outlines the service and quality indicators expected by NHS England (the Commissioner) for their responsible population. The current published national service specification can be found at the below link:

More information

Additional text

It should be noted that the NDESP will be updated to implement extended screening intervals. The national service specification reflects initial requirements to implement this development in 2019-2020. Given that this change is anticipated during the term of the contract, the Provider will need to demonstrate how they will be able to reflect any new requirements or changes to the national programme in its service provision.

The contract is due to commence on 1st April 2021. The contract length will be confirmed at future market engagement events. The current Diabetic Eye Screening activity, split by current Lots are listed below. These figures are based on achieving minimum KPI uptake levels.
• Bedfordshire - approximately 39,000 screening events (of which 15,000 in Luton)
• East & North Hertfordshire - approximately 30,000 screening events
• West Hertfordshire - approximately 23,000 screening events
• Milton Keynes and Buckinghamshire - approximately 40,000 screening events (15,000 in Milton Keynes and 25,000 in Buckinghamshire)
Total 132,000 screening events

The ITT Process
Interested parties who wish to take part in the procurement process are invited to register their expression of interest and to respond to an Invitation to Tender (ITT) when this is published. Around September 2019. The ITT will be available through the Arden & GEM Procurement Portal

Market Engagement Event and Expression of Interest
There will be an opportunity for potential Providers to attend a market engagement event on 15 May 2019. The market event will give Providers an overview of service to be provided, the contract type, length and particular conditions. The event will also be used to explain the procurement process and the anticipated timelines.

Further information about the market engagement event will be published. If you would like to attend the market engagement event, then you will be required to register your interest.
Details about how to register your expression of interest will be published closer to the date, on the following websites:

About the buyer

Contact name

Raj Dosanjh


Nottingham Road


Closing date: 31 March 2019