75N95020R00049 – Sources Sought – Honest Data Broker for the NIH COVID-19 Data Warehouse

Jul 30, 2020 | Sources Sought


Solicitation Number: 75N95020R00049

Title:  Honest Data Broker for the NIH COVID-19 Data Warehouse

Classification Code: PSC D318: IT and Telecom – Integrated Hardware/Software/Services Solutions, Predominantly Services 

NAICS Code:  541519 – Other Computer-Related Services


This is a Sources Sought notice. This is NOT a solicitation for proposals, proposal abstracts, or quotations. The purpose of this notice is to obtain information regarding the availability and capability of all qualified sources to perform a potential requirement.

This notice is issued to help determine the availability of qualified companies technically capable of meeting the Government requirement and to determine the method of acquisition.  It is not to be construed as a commitment by the Government to issue a solicitation or ultimately award a contract.  Responses will not be considered as proposals or quotes.  No award will be made as a result of this notice.  The Government will NOT be responsible for any costs incurred by the respondents to this notice.  This notice is strictly for research and information purposes only.

Purpose and Objectives: The National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), requires the services of an honest data broker for the NIH COVID-19 Data Warehouse to ensure the privacy and confidentiality of the clinical data it contains.

Background:  The NIH COVID-19 Data Warehouse is an NIH data sharing resource which contains a limited data set for aggregating and sharing clinical data across sites, while maintaining individuals’ privacy and confidentiality.

The NIH COVID-19 Data Warehouse supports a new effort called the National COVID Cohort Collaborative, or N3C. N3C is building a centralized national data resource that the research community can use to study COVID-19 and identify potential treatments as the pandemic continues to evolve. Specifically, the N3C will enable the rapid collection and analysis of clinical, laboratory and diagnostic data from hospitals and health care plans. See https://covid.cd2h.org/. Collaborators will contribute and use COVID-19 clinical data to answer critical research questions to address the pandemic

The role of the honest broker is to stand as a neutral intermediary between the sources of clinical data for the Warehouse and the Warehouse itself to ensure the privacy and confidentiality of the data itself. The data available in the Warehouse will be deidentified so that no user of the data can determine the identity of the source.

Project requirements: This project requires a contractor with extensive expertise as an honest data broker in developing and operationalizing data solutions for data governance in clinical and research data sharing collaborations. As part of its role for N3C, the contractor will be required to provide the data contributors with state-of-the-art cryptographic hashing tools and processes to identify and merge duplicate patients (locally and network-wide) and their respective clinical data, as well as provide re-linking of data for prospective data integration (e.g. longitudinal data, new data elements).

Anticipated period of performance: August 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020.

Other important considerations: This is an urgent requirement. Any contractor will have to be able to stand up the honest broker services immediately.

Capability statement /information sought. Please provide a capability statement, not to exceed ten pages, providing information regarding: (a) staff expertise, including their availability, experience, and formal and other training; (b) current in-house capability and capacity to perform the work; (c) prior completed projects of similar nature; (d) corporate experience and management capability; and (e) examples of prior contracts, grants, or other arrangements whereby you provided honest data broker services involving clinical data.

Please provide your DUNS number, organization name, address, point of contact, and size and type of business (e.g. for-profit/non-profit; socioeconomic status such as 8(a), Small Business, SDVOSB, WOSB, HubZone, etc., pursuant to the applicable NAICS code), and any other information that may be helpful in developing or finalizing the acquisition requirements. Also indicate any Government-wide acquisition vehicles you may have available (e.g. GSA, NITAAC, etc.).

The information submitted must be must be in an outline format that addresses each of the elements of the project requirement.  A cover page and an executive summary may be included but is not required.

The response must include the respondents’ technical and administrative points of contact, including names, titles, addresses, telephone and fax numbers, and e-mail addresses.

All responses to this notice must be received by 8:00 a.m. Eastern time, Monday, August 3, 2020 and reference solicitation no. 75N95020R00049. Responses must be submitted by e-mail to Stuart Kern, Contract Specialist, at stuart.kern@nih.gov, tel. 301-402-3334.

Disclaimer and Important Notes:  This notice does not obligate the Government to award a contract or otherwise pay for the information provided in response. The Government reserves the right to use information provided by respondents for any purpose deemed necessary and legally appropriate. Any organization responding to this notice should ensure that its response is complete and sufficiently detailed to allow the Government to determine the organization’s qualifications to perform the work.

Respondents are advised that the Government is under no obligation to acknowledge receipt of the information received or provide feedback to respondents with respect to any information submitted. After a review of the responses received, this requirement may be solicited via beta.SAM.gov or GSA eBuy. However, responses to this notice will not be considered adequate responses to a solicitation.

Confidentiality: No proprietary, classified, confidential, or sensitive information should be included in your response. The Government reserves the right to use any non-proprietary technical information in any resultant solicitation(s).

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