By Sally Underwood •
Published: 14 Feb 2021 • 12:57
Legal Action: The government faces legal action after awarding a contract. Image: Photopin
The government’s Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) is the facing legal action over a £145m test and trace contract after it emerged it had allegedly awarded at least 25 contacts to one company since last year.
The government handed the deal to multinational professional services firm Deloitte but The Good Law Project now claims the government breached public contract regulations by not putting the contract out to tender.
Jolyon Maugham, Director of Good Law Project told one publication: “The consultancy gravy train shows no sign of stopping. Not only did Government fail to advertise or put this huge contract out to tender, they didn’t come clean about the enormous sum of public money handed to Deloitte until around the time the contract had ended.
“We believe this particular contract in question, that could be worth almost £1m a day, is unlawful and have initiated legal proceedings.”
While Deloitte declined to comment, a DHSC spokesperson said: “Rapidly building the largest diagnostic network in British history was a task that necessitated the expertise and experience of both public and private partners, and every penny spent has been with the aim of saving lives.
“We now have over 800 testing sites across the UK, six major laboratories processing hundreds of thousands of tests every single day and a NHS Test and Trace programme that is the biggest testing system, per head of population, of all the major countries in Europe.
“Alongside other public and private sector partners, Deloitte are supporting Government as we continue to expand our testing capacity.”
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