Hospital responds to controversy over catering contract

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The following is a press release from the Mount St. John’s Medical Centre (MSJMC):

St. John’s, Antigua, December 7, 2020

Mount St. John’s Medical Centre (MSJMC) categorically refutes publicly issued statements by Mr. Nigel Joseph of Nigel’s Catering regarding the selection process for a supplier of dietary services to MSJMC. 

Mr. Nigel Joseph was fully aware and participated in the selection process, as did all other prospective suppliers who were made known of this opportunity via public advertisement. This process was no different to the process that Mr. Nigel Joseph would have participated, won and was awarded a contract. At that time, there were unsuccessful bidders.  

Prior to the conclusion of Mr. Nigel Joseph’s contract, he was made fully aware that a public selection process would have been initiated, as was done previously. Mr. Joseph was made aware of the requirements of the selection criteria that were conveyed via a Request for Proposal (RFP) communicated to Mr. Joseph and every other proposed bidder who responded to the public solicitation.  

MSJMC has always intended to ensure that suppliers of services meet set standards of operation and have the capacity to provide the institution’s goal of delivering stable, consistent, and reliable service to its patients. The process fairly and transparently considered five (5) proposals from individuals/companies duly registered within Antigua and Barbuda; examined and evaluated all bids and made a selection based on the advertised criteria.  

Selection criteria were appropriately defined and communicated to Mr. Joseph and all prospective bidders with priority areas consisting of (1) cost options, (2) technical capability, (3) dietary services (meal production and menu format/flexibility)(4) financial capability, (5) relationship with suppliers, (6) references and (7) readiness to assume services.  

Mr. Joseph was also made aware of all criteria during the bidders’ conference for prospective suppliers on 26 May 2020 that was specifically designed to communicate and offer clarity on the requirements of the hospital’s needs as well as provide an avenue for questions to be posed and answered. Three options were outlined related to the cost component: (1) rent with full equipment complement; (2) rent without full equipment complement and (3) option for the supplier to add value based on the expressed needs of MSJMC. As the incumbent supplier, Mr. Joseph would have held a natural and automatic advantage, having first-hand knowledge of the hospital’s needs and would have had ample opportunity to describe in his bid the manner in which he proposed to satisfy the institutions dietary needs.  

Based on an objective assessment, Mr. Nigel Joseph’s bid was not the best proposal for MSJMC and was unsuccessful. MSJMC unreservedly rejects the public utterances of Mr. Nigel Joseph, which are contrary to known facts.  

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