Rob Finch the chief executive of the College of Chiropractic told me in December 2005 that the GCC did not put the test of competency out for tender, but renewed Glamorgan’s contract. He wrote to the GCC in May expressing concern about this “Due process”
Does anybody know how the GCC came to this decision. The contract is worth hundreds of thousands of pounds how do we know the profession got the best deal, was their discussion. This sounds very similar to the way the BCA changed insurers last year.
A council member described the decision to award the contract to Glamorgan as blatent cronyism between Margaret Coats and Dr Sue King head of the course at Glamorgan.
Why was it not put out to tender.
Based on my experience, I do not believe Glamorgan can set a competency test that would be fair to subluxation chiropractors or to chiropractors who believe chiropractic is a relatively safe intervention. He would call chiropractors who do not warn patients of the "serious risks" involed with chiropractic treatment "cavalier". Despite the fact there is no evidence of a causal relationship between serious injury and spinal manipulation.
Public services must put contracts out to tender to make sure they are getting the best deal for the taxpayer and the bids should be sealed, there are no checks and balances if you do not. Otherwise the GCC could be giving a contract to family or friends and making money out of the deal at the same time. Not to mention conflict of interest.
How do we know Glamorgan offered the best deal for the GCC if it was not put out to tender.
It is outragous, we have to get this stuff out to more chiropractors. Most chiropractors would want the contract to go to either AECC, McTimoney or The College of Chiropractic, very few would choose Glamorgan. So who made the decision and why. I think this could be more important than the vote of confidence.
THis is the GCC response on my questions on the matter
"When the contract for the Test of Competence finished in November 2005 why was the College of Chiropractic not given the opportunity to bid for the new contract? What is the contract worth? When and who made the decision to give the contract to Glamorgan? How do they know that Glamorgan offered the best value for the GCC is the contract was not put out to tender"?
The GCC responses to your requests are as follows.
Contract for the Test of Competence
"In October 2004 the General Chiropractic Council agreed to undertake a review of the contract for the provision of the Test of Competence that had been awarded to the University of Glamorgan following the original competitive tendering exercise.
Members of Council agreed the review should focus on the following factors
1. Quality assurance mechanisms
2. Analysis of any appeals to the University against the decisions of the Test of Competence Exam Board
3. Feedback from candidates
4. Feedback from examiners from the field
5. Reports of the external examiner
6. Detailed analysis of income and expenditure for the cost recovery model
All necessary documentation in relation to these factors was provided by the University and representatives attended a closed meeting of Council on 2 February 2005 to respond to questions.
With regard to the cost to candidates using the cost recovery model, Council noted that the fee had been held steady at £1,500 since 2002, though more constant updating of the content had been required than had been anticipated originally by either Councillor the University. Council also noted that a similar test for medical practitioners costs £2,000 per candidate.
The outcome of the review was a decision by Council that it would not re-tender but would renew the contract with the University of Glamorgan at the cost to candidates of £1,500 per Test for a period of three years from 29 November 2005.
The General Chiropractic Council makes no financial contribution to the contract".
I think the contract should have been put out to tender. While they may have been happy with Glamorgan how do they know The College of Chiropractic, AECC, or McTimoney could not have improved on what Glamorgan had been doing. I am a democrat and if the members of council came to the decision to renew with Glamorgan it is a suprise and they should be asked about it should they seek re election