Competitive bidding update

Sunday, December 6, 2009

BALTIMORE - CMS issued a stern warning last week to providers taking part in the re-bid of competitive bidding Round 1.2: Don't you dare run afoul of federal or state anti-trust laws.

"I feel the need to repeat this today because we have heard concerns about acts of collusion that may be occurring in this round of bidding," said CMS's Joel Kaiser during the Open Door Forum. "We take these laws very seriously and will not tolerate violations. A supplier suspected to have violated federal anti-trust laws by engaging in practices such as price fixing, bid rigging or other forms of collusion will be referred to the department of justice for investigation and be subject to having its bid rejected."

Kaiser also gave a few "high-level" reminders related to competitive bidding:

--    Bids must be submitted by 9 p.m. EST Dec. 21.

--    Providers who plan to bid but have not yet logged onto the online system should do so no later than Dec. 7. "It may take you longer than you anticipate to submit your bid," Kaiser said.

--    All hard-copy financial documents must be postmarked by 11:59 p.m. EST Dec. 21.

--    Providers must make sure that financial documents adhere to all requirements listed in appendix B of the request for proposal (RFP). Providers who have already submitted financial documents can review them and, if necessary, submit revised documents before bidding closes Dec. 21. "If your documents do not meet all of the requirements, all of your bids will be disqualified and you will not be eligible for a contract," Kaiser said.