B-195391(2),L/M, MAR 10, 1980

B-195391(2),L/M: Mar 10, 1980

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BY DECISION OF TODAY (COPY ENCLOSED) WE HAVE DENIED THE PROTEST IN PART AND SUSTAINED THE PROTEST IN PART. THIS PROTEST IS THE LATEST IN A SERIES OF PROTESTS AND COURT ACTIONS BROUGHT EITHER BY B&W OR PAL (DEPENDING UPON WHICH FIRM WAS ELIGIBLE FOR AWARD) OVER THE AWARD OF THIS AND RELATED CONTRACTS FOR THESE SERVICES. ALL OF THESE PROTESTS GENERALLY RELATE TO THE PREAWARD ACCEPTANCE TESTS WHICH PROSPECTIVE CONTRACTORS ARE REQUIRED TO PASS AS A PREREQUISITE TO THE CONTRACT AWARD. THESE PREAWARD TESTS REQUIRE THAT PROSPECTIVE CONTRACTORS ANALYZE SPECIALLY PREPARED URINE SAMPLES WHICH HAVE BEEN "SPIKED" AFTER COLLECTION WITH VARIOUS DRUGS TO DETERMINE THEIR ABILITY TO PROPERLY PERFORM THE REQUIRED LABORATORY SERVICES.

B-195391(2),L/M, MAR 10, 1980

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

MARION S. BARRY, JR., MAYOR OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA:

WE REFER TO THE PROTEST OF B&W STAT LABORATORY, INC. (B&W) OVER THE AWARD OF A CONTRACT TO PRECISION ANALYTICAL LABORATORIES, INC. (PAL) FOR ON-SITE DRUG DETECTION URINALYSIS SERVICES FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA SUPERIOR COURT. BY DECISION OF TODAY (COPY ENCLOSED) WE HAVE DENIED THE PROTEST IN PART AND SUSTAINED THE PROTEST IN PART.

AS OUR DECISION NOTES, THIS PROTEST IS THE LATEST IN A SERIES OF PROTESTS AND COURT ACTIONS BROUGHT EITHER BY B&W OR PAL (DEPENDING UPON WHICH FIRM WAS ELIGIBLE FOR AWARD) OVER THE AWARD OF THIS AND RELATED CONTRACTS FOR THESE SERVICES. ALL OF THESE PROTESTS GENERALLY RELATE TO THE PREAWARD ACCEPTANCE TESTS WHICH PROSPECTIVE CONTRACTORS ARE REQUIRED TO PASS AS A PREREQUISITE TO THE CONTRACT AWARD. THESE PREAWARD TESTS REQUIRE THAT PROSPECTIVE CONTRACTORS ANALYZE SPECIALLY PREPARED URINE SAMPLES WHICH HAVE BEEN "SPIKED" AFTER COLLECTION WITH VARIOUS DRUGS TO DETERMINE THEIR ABILITY TO PROPERLY PERFORM THE REQUIRED LABORATORY SERVICES.

AFTER THE LATEST CONTROVERSY AROSE OVER THESE TESTS, THE DISTRICT REQUESTED THE ARMED FORCES INSTITUTE OF PATHOLOGY (AFIP) TO ASSIST IT TO CONFIRM SAMPLE DRUG CONTENT BY ANALYZING THE SPIKED SAMPLES USED BY THE BIDDERS. THE RESULTS OF THE AFIP TESTS LEAD US TO THE CONCLUSION THAT THE PAL PREAWARD TEST RESULTS, WHILE NOT NECESSARILY INCORRECT AS ALLEGED, NONETHELESS MAY BE CONSIDERED TO BE INCONCLUSIVE. IN THIS RESPECT WE BELIEVE THE METHODS UTILIZED BY THE DISTRICT TO PREPARE THESE SAMPLES HAVE SIGNIFICANTLY CONTRIBUTED TO THE DOUBTFUL VALIDITY OF THESE TESTS. FOR THAT REASON, AND IN AN ATTEMPT TO AVOID A CONTINUING CONTROVERSY OVER THE AWARD OF THESE CONTRACTS, WE INFORMALLY REQUESTED AFIP TO RECOMMEND SAMPLE PREPARATION PROCEDURES WHICH WOULD HELP TO AVOID THE PITFALLS PRESENTLY BEING ENCOUNTERED. BY LETTER DATED DECEMBER 21, 1979, AFIP RECOMMENDED CERTAIN CLINICAL PROCEDURES WHICH IT FOLLOWS FOR SIMILAR DOD DRUG DETECTION PROGRAMS (COPY ENCLOSED). WE BELIEVE THAT IT WOULD BE IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE DISTRICT GOVERNMENT TO CAREFULLY REVIEW AFIP'S ADVICE, AND CONSIDER ADOPTING THE PROPOSED PROCEDURES.

PLEASE NOTE THAT OUR DECISION RECOMMENDS THAT THE PAL CONTRACT BE PERMITTED TO RUN ITS COURSE FOR THE INITIAL CONTRACT TERM, BUT THAT THE OPTION FOR RENEWAL NOT BE EXERCISED.

WE WOULD APPRECIATE BEING ADVISED OF THE ACTIONS TAKEN BY THE DISTRICT IN RESPONSE TO OUR RECOMMENDATIONS.