§ Mr. Fatchett
To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will set out the procedures by which Newchurch was awarded the contract to advise the NHS executive on the private finance initiative. 
§ Mr. Sackville
Newchurch and Company was awarded the contract to provide a private finance database service which brings the national health service and potential private sector together. Registration on the database and searches are free of charge to NHS users.
Nine companies and the NHS Supplies authority were invited to tender. They were sent details of the aim and objectives of the private finance database project, the main tasks to be undertaken, the performance criteria and a specification of tenders.
Six tenders were received. These were considered and three of the bidders were shortlisted for interview. A selection panel of four conducted the interviews at which Newchurch was successful.