The Government Contracts team recently represented Ed Medical, Inc., a Tennessee-based full service home medical supply provider, in a successful bid protest at the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO). For the past 11 years, Ed Medical has been providing home oxygen services for the Veterans Administration (VA) . Ed Medical’s VA contract covers Region 9 of the Veterans Integrated Services Network (VISN 9) which includes Tennessee and Kentucky, as well as portions of Mississippi and West Virginia. Last year, the VA released a solicitation for follow-on work in VISN 9, for which Ed Medical submitted a competitive proposal.
In March 2015, the VA announced an award under the solicitation to another contractor, revealing the award price of approximately $18 million. Given Ed Medical’s vast experience providing home oxygen services in the region, it was immediately clear the price of the award was far too low for the work required. Thus, we filed a bid protest at GAO challenging the VA’s award decision based on the award price.
In the protest, we argued that the Solicitation required the VA to evaluate each offeror’s proposed price to determine whether it was realistic, i.e., whether the offeror could actually perform the work for the proposed price. The record demonstrated that the VA failed to conduct the price realism analysis, and awarded the contract without considering the risk inherent with such an unrealistically low price. GAO agreed with our argument and sustained the protest on those grounds. The VA was instructed to take corrective action and reevaluate the offeror’s price proposals for realism, and potentially make a new source selection decision.
To read the decision, click here.