§ Mr. Collins
To ask the Secretary of State for Health on how many occasions in the last 12 months the requirement to engage in a competitive tendering process has been waived by his Department due to national security obligations under paragraph 6(h) of the supply regulations. 
§ Mr. Hutton
In the last 12 months the Department has on one occasion used the exemptions provided for in paragraph 6(h) of the Public Supply Contracts Regulations as grounds for not conforming to open competitive tendering.
This one occasion relates to the purchase of smallpox vaccine where the Department nonetheless held discussions with several potential suppliers prior to awarding a contract.