RFP for Data Collection for TB Study

Request for proposals

Number:

RFP-2021-02

Project:

Data Collection for Tuberculosis Private Sector Engagement Study

Phase:

Data Collection Support for Special Study

Funder:

Social Impact/USAID

RFP Release Date:

13 Jan 2021

Deadline for Questions:

3:00 PM Hanoi time,18 Jan 2021

Answers to Questions:

21 Jan 2021

Deadline for Proposals:

3:00 PM Hanoi time, 31 Jan 2021

Contact:

Thanh Ha Nguyen, thanhha.nguyen@socialimpact.com

Trang Dinh,

trang.dinh@socialimpact.com

Annexes

Annex A: Budget template

I. Project Background

About Social Impact and Learns

Social Impact is a global development management consulting firm. We provide monitoring, evaluation, strategic planning, and capacity building services to advance development effectiveness. We work across all development sectors including democracy and governance, health and education, the environment, and economic growth. Since 1997 we have worked in over 100 countries for clients such as US government agencies, bilateral donors, multilateral development banks, foundations, and nonprofits.

SI is implementing the USAID/Vietnam Learns Contract. The scope of the five-year project is to support USAID/Vietnam staff and its implementing partners to implement more efficient, effective, and sustainable programs by (1) improving staff’s knowledge and skills in Monitoring, Evaluation & Learning (MEL) and Collaborating, Learning & Adapting (CLA); (2) advancing evidence-informed decision-making; (3) strengthening strategic collaboration between staff and local stakeholders.

Under this contract, SI is requesting information from firms to gauge interest in and qualifications for a forthcoming solicitation for data collection services for the Tuberculosis Private Sector Engagement study.

Project Background

The National Tuberculosis Control Programme (NTP) was established in 1986. The NTP is the primary entity leading Vietnam in its planning to end TB by 2030. Significant efforts have been made to achieve this goal, including mobilization of involvement from various parties, including both the public and private sector.

In recent years, the private sector has developed fast. NTP and the government in general has acknowledged the role that both the public and private sector plays in addressing TB, but need more information about engagement of these sectors. There were early private sector pilots in 2002, but the private sector entities were not ready to engage with NTP. In 2005, NTP piloted models in smaller localities like Thanh Hoa and Thai Binh but mostly focused on the referral system. A standardized manual for private entities was developed in 2007 and has been distributed nationwide. There is a sense that the scale of implementation has increased and the number of cases receiving services from the private sector has increased, but there is no data to back up these assumptions. 

There are assumptions about the quality and breadth of the private sector in the three core areas mentioned above. There is limited research, including a decade-old study conducted in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) that showed negative outcomes for private sector services. There have been additional studies that referenced private sector, but a study dedicated to the private sector and understanding its current role in diagnosis, treatment, and referral is currently lacking.

Objectives of the study

The purpose of this study is to gain a better understanding of the role of the private sector in TB diagnosis, treatment, and referral. The results of this study are expected to provide international partners information they need to build on private sector involvement and reallocate resources in a way that meets specific needs within Vietnam.

Over the long-term, the Government of Vietnam hopes to use the study results to improve private sector interventions, which will provide better patient services by helping NTP to link with private sector providers and support them to provide improved diagnosis, referral, and treatment services

The overall objective of this Request for Proposals is to collect quantitative data to inform this study. Specifically, the study is to help answer the following Evaluation Questions (EQ):

Question #1: Based on the research, specify the estimated number of TB patients (and %) being treated in selected areas of Vietnam for TB related services, disaggregated by:   

  • Location (Province);  
  • Type of provider: a) Private; b) Public non-NTP, c) Public NTP   
  • Type of service: a) referral, b) diagnosis and c) treatment 

Question #2: Based on the research, specify all identifiable service providers in the study areas known to offer TB related services, disaggregated by:   

  • Location (Province);  
  • Type of provider: a) Private; b) Public non-NTP, c) Public NTP   
  • Type of service: a) referral, b) diagnosis and c) treatment  

Question #3: Provide an estimated number of service providers in study areas which have and have not connected to the NTP disaggregated by:   

  • Location (Province),   
  • Type of provider: a) Private; b) Public non-NTP, c) Public NTP   
  • Other key characteristic (if applicable) 

Question #4: Examine the extent to which NTP guidelines might be met by private sector and public sector service providers (NTP and non-NTP). The analysis should be disaggregated by: a) Referrals, b) Diagnosis, c) Treatment, and d) Offer insight into main identified barriers in study areas. 

        Question #4.1: What are challenges and barriers that prevent the service providers from complying with the NTP guidelines? 

Question #5: Assess the extent to which service providers contribute to government reporting requirements and seem to meet required reporting standards.  The analysis should be disaggregated by: a) Private; b) Public non-NTP, c) Public NTP service providers in study areas. 

        Question #5.1: What are challenges and barriers that prevent the service providers from complying with the reporting guidelines? 

Question #6: What is the level of satisfaction among TB patients in regard to TB healthcare services offered by the private sector and public sector service providers (NTP and non-NTP)?  The analysis should be disaggregated by:  a) Private/Public Sector and b) Study area. 

II. Scope of Work

SI is seeking to engage a data collection firm who is well versed in collection of quantitative health research data in Vietnam. SI is open to a diverse range of bidders from the public and private sector, research institutions and universities. Implementation of data collection will take place around late February and early March. Precise dates will be communicated upon award.

The Subcontractor will prepare a technical proposal that addresses all aspects of the data collection as detailed in each section below. This activity will take part in two (2) provinces/cities: Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi in a total of ten (10) districts. Bidders can apply to conduct the work in either one or both cities.

Data Collection Activities

Data collection is anticipated to take place at 4 locations: hospitals (public and private), clinics (public and private), commune health centers (public) and pharmacies (public and private). A fifth location, laboratories, may be included in the event that a hospital’s clinic or lab is offsite. Each location will include one or more data collection tools which are outlined in the table and subsequent narrative below. This subcontract will consist of the following activities:

Activity

Expected time to implement

Targeted Respondent

Sample Size

Health Facility Short Survey Questionnaire

10 – 15 mins.

Health facility staff respondents at health facilities which potentially provide TB services:

·   Hospital and clinic (including laboratories when applicable)

·   CHC

·   Pharmacy

700 surveys total

Total

 

 

700 surveys/ province

 

All surveys are expected to be delivered in-person using protocols and questionnaires developed by SI. The health facilities will be given 3-5 days to fill out the survey, and the subcontractor will then return to each location to pick up the sealed survey responses. This survey will be paper-based, not digital. It includes 7-10 multiple choice questions and some questions may allow for an open-ended response. SI’s research team will provide a final sample of locations to be visited and the list of selected health facilities. SI expects that the data collection from health facilities to last two weeks.

  • Preparations for Data Collection

Subcontractors will be required to undertake several activities in preparation for data collection.

This will include:

Work Plan: The subcontractor shall present a work plan to Social Impact outlining the state of the subcontractor’s mobilization, including the deployment of both human and material resources (team composition) and phases of work including submission dates for key deliverables. The work plan should clearly demonstrate the starting time and duration of each task, phasing and interrelations, and allocation of manpower and resources for the duration of the services. It should confirm the composition of field teams and individual team member responsibilities. The work plan should be in line with the Research Team’s Inception Report which outlines various components of the evaluation design, including the methodology. Edits may be required based on SI feedback. The Work Plan should be submitted in English.  

Data submission: The subcontractor is responsible for data entry and data cleaning, and secure storage of all datasets and should clearly highlight their process for data security. SI should have full access and permissions to the database where data will be stored.

Language: Surveys will be provided by SI to the subcontractor in Vietnamese. Data should be submitted from the subcontractor to SI in Vietnamese (as original data) and English (translated from the Vietnamese version).

Clean sampling frame: SI’s Research Team will provide the subcontractor with the final facility sample. The subcontractor will be responsible to conduct outreach efforts to collect the necessary data within the given timeframe. We recommend that the subcontractor conduct a review of the sample prior to initiating data collection.

Pretesting, Training and Piloting

  • Training: Training will take place prior to data collection with close guidance from SI. The subcontractor shall be expected to conduct a minimum one full working day training on outreach, data collection, data management, and ethical standards of data collection for survey enumerators. Training is expected to take place in a location specified by the subcontractor and subcontractors are responsible for providing the venue and all necessary materials.
  • Enumerators must be adequately trained prior to data collection. Subcontractors shall describe in their technical proposal their approach to assessing enumerator readiness to conduct data collection during and after the training, i.e. specifically how they will determine and address non-performing trainees. No enumerator is to be sent to the field until he/she has demonstrated sufficient understanding of the protocols, instrument and data collection ethics. Representatives of the SI Research Team will assist with the training and may test enumerators as needed and may require, at their discretion, replacement of enumerators deemed to be performing inadequately in training or in the field.
  • Piloting: Piloting will be done as part of training. It is focused on the entire process of data collection and is meant to be a “real-life” practice of the data collection. The subcontractor should include  a location for piloting inside the sampled areas and provided justification. Following piloting, it is not expected that any changes to the tool will be needed. All approved survey enumerators should participate in the pilot and conduct at least two surveys comparable to those that they will be responsible for in the field. The subcontractor shall ensure all survey instruments are piloted within the survey team.
  • Training & Pilot Debrief: The subcontractor shall be expected to hold a debrief meeting with SI’s Research Team within one (1) working day of completing piloting. This meeting will be used to review edits or suggested edits to instruments or protocols, confirm sampling, and confirm timeline plans. Final instruments and protocols must be approved by SI’s Research Team Leader before the main survey begins.

Quality Assurance

Subcontractors will be required to conduct quality control, at minimum following the requirements listed below. SI will be conducting independent quality assurance for the duration of this activity. Subcontractors will be required to respond in a timely manner to SI questions regarding data quality control and other measures of data quality assurance.

Led by Subcontractor:

  • Daily team debriefs: Check-ins with the enumerators to review any challenges faced, allow for questions and clarifications, and provide feedback to the wider group. These are especially important early in the data collection activity to ensure that the necessary sample is reached.
  • Enumerator checks: While collecting the surveys, enumerators need to check to ensure that the survey is fully completed or providing justification in cases data is unknown, unavailable or not collected before leaving the facility.
  • Supervisor checks: Supervisors will check enumerator forms before they are entered into the database to ensure completeness and spot-check for errors.

Led by Social Impact:

Independent quality checks: [Surveys] SI’s Research Team will conduct independent quality checks of the data provided via the database, summarizing any questions or feedback for the subcontractor. The subcontractor will be required to respond to these questions within 2-3 business days of receiving them.

Respondent Protection & Data Security

Subcontractors are required to abide by SI’s respondent protection and data security protocols.

All field staff will be asked to sign a non-disclosure agreement signifying their understanding of ethical behavior in the field and proper handling of respondents’ confidential and private information, including personally identifiable information (PII).

Subcontractors will ensure proper measures are taken in the field to monitor enumerators’ behavior with respect to respondent protection and data security (handling of surveys, etc.).

In addition, subcontractor proposals must detail how they will ensure the safety and security of their staff while visiting TB facilities and what steps will be taken to ensure enumerator health and safety in light of current government public health protocols surrounding COVID-19.

III. Personnel and Staffing Plan

Bidders should provide CVs for required team members (key personnel) positions as listed below, which meet the minimum qualifications. In this section, bidders should also describe their recruitment strategy for other field staff and should specify the total number of enumerators and supervisors that will conduct the activity. In presenting their recruitment strategy, bidders should consider the following:

Timeline and Staffing Considerations

  • Hold 1-day training with firm in central location prior to data collection
  • All data must be collected within 10 working days, including training, data collection, and travel.

The Subcontractor is expected to provide appropriate experts who will bring inputs as per the work plan. The proposed team shall consist of the personnel listed in the table below. SI has a preference for bidders that have extensive experience in public health, particularly in carrying out data collection on sensitive health-related topics and data. Bidders must be comfortable conducting data collection in health-related TB settings. The number of enumerators should be proposed by the subcontractor as necessary and based on the subcontractor’s proposed approach to the assignment. Personnel must have experience conducting surveys in Vietnam.

KEY PERSONNEL:

Key Personnel

Qualifications

Project Manager (1)

  • A minimum qualification of a bachelor’s degree in Statistics, or a related field in Health Sciences.
  • At least five (5) years of experience in survey/research design and implementation in Vietnam.
  • At least three (3) years of demonstrated ability to supervise, lead, and manage a multi-disciplinary team and experience in survey implementation in the health care sector, particularly with patients receiving medical services.
  • Experience in survey planning, fielding, and reporting, including logistics of transporting enumerators.
  • Expertise in ensuring data quality and protocol compliance in the field.
  • Excellent communication skills and experience in working with a wide range of individuals in government, the private sector, and civil society.
  • Native Vietnamese speaker.
  • Fluency in written and spoken English.

Enumerators

  • A minimum of a university-level qualification is desirable.
  • At least three (3) years of experience in implementing survey/research design and implementation.
  • Expertise in setting up and conducting surveys in the health care sector in Vietnam.
  • Excellent data entry skills.
  • Preferably local university students.
  • Native Vietnamese speaker.

Recruitment and staffing procedures should be outlined in the technical proposal, along with contingencies for staff replacement, should the need arise, during data collection.

Note that if civil servants working in Vietnam are proposed as professionals, a proof from their employer that she/he will be on leave of absence for the duration of his/her assignment under this contract shall be included in the technical proposal as well.

IV. Reporting

  • Work Plan: The subcontractor is responsible for developing a detailed work plan which outlines the timeline and process for staffing, enumerator and moderator training, pilot testing, data collection, data entry/transfer, and data quality control. The work plan should outline any areas for which the subcontractor requires support from SI.
  • Final Report:
    At the conclusion of quantitative data collection, the subcontractor will deliver a data quality summary. This will include information about challenges in data collection, data quality process, data quality issue identification/limitations, and final dataset metadata (sample replacement, response rate, average duration of survey, etc.). Additionally, the subcontractor will prepare a final report. SI will provide a further detailed outline upon award, but the data quality report will include at least the following information:

    • Data source
    • Sample size
    • Sample size of pilot(s)
    • Dates of pilot(s)
    • Dates of data collection
    • Sites of data collection
    • Number of enumerators
    • Average number of surveys conducted per enumerator per day
    • Summary of quality checks performed during fieldwork

The subcontractor will be responsible for submitting all raw data to SI. Any additional cleaning conducted by the subcontract must be transparent and replicable.

V. Deliverables & Payment Schedule

The subcontractor will submit invoices according to the payments listed below. Weeks are estimated, and relative to contract signing. Submission dates for each deliverable invoiced and SI approval dates should be specified on the invoice. Invoices cannot be submitted prior to SI accepting deliverables/milestones in writing.

Phase

Deliverables / Milestones

Week

(est.)

Payment

 

1: Prep

Kickoff call

1

 

 

Work plan

1

 

2: Training

Training, piloting, revisions

2

 

 

Training and piloting debrief

2

25%

3: Fieldwork

100% of surveys completed

3

 

4: Reporting

Datasets

4

 

 

Final Report

4

75%

Total

100%

The subcontractor shall be expected to be available during the entire duration of the services and shall be responsible for management of the services. This includes supervision and management of the data collection, liaising with the SI Research Team and other parties, office management, and ensuring quality control of services. As part of project management, a number of meetings between SI and the subcontractor may be scheduled at any point in time. The subcontractor shall produce minutes of all proceedings. The subcontractor shall submit all the deliverables to the SI Technical Director and Research Team Leader for approval.

All data should be submitted electronically and in Vietnamese. Raw data from the surveys should be submitted in excel (*.xlsx). The final report shall be submitted electronically in English and in Microsoft Word. Spreadsheets should be submitted in Microsoft Excel. Any digital photo files should be submitted in JPG format. Any presentations should be submitted in Microsoft PowerPoint. Any other format(s) must be agreed upon by SI. The contract number shall be placed on each report.

The subcontractor should note that payment of fees for the services is linked to approval of individual deliverables by Social Impact. The subcontractor should note that all reports will be considered draft until they are reviewed and approved by Social Impact.

VI. Scoring Criteria

The bidder should have a strong track record of health sector data collection in Vietnam. The bidder should have a qualified team of Vietnamese staff and be able to provide adequate logistical resources to organize, train, deploy, and supervise them in the field. Selection will be made on a best value tradeoff process based on the criteria listed below. Criteria are listed in order of importance. The technical quality of proposals will be weighted the most. However, offerors should strive to be as economical as possible in their offers.

Social Impact will weigh the following factors to score proposals:

  • Technical Proposal: Compliance with requirements of scope of work; understanding of data collection activity requirements. The proposal should include a description of (1) project management, (2) training and piloting, (3) outreach and data collection, (4) quality assurance and risk mitigation, (5) reporting, and (6) a workplan.
  • Personnel: Compliance with required qualifications and overall demonstrated experience of the personnel presented. Preference will be given to bidders who can utilize local university students as enumerators.
  • Past Performance: Demonstrated, successful experience conducting similar activities in comparable settings, as specified in the Scope of Work. This experience should reflect institutional capacity, not just that of individual team members.
  • Cost: Compliance and alignment with technical scope of work; competitiveness; value.

VII. Submission Instructions

Bidders should follow the instructions below for submission of questions and proposals:

QUESTIONS

Please use subject line “PROJECT NAME – RFP NUMBER”

Please send to all email addresses in the “Contact” field on page 1 by the deadline for questions. Late submission of questions will be considered on a case by case basis by the SI project team.

PROPOSALS

Technical Proposals: Bidders will submit technical proposals, using the page limitations described below. Material that exceeds the page limitations will not be reviewed or scored by SI. Technical proposals will not include any financial information; SI may disqualify bids that include financial information in the technical proposal. The technical proposal will consist of the following components, such that the full technical proposal does not exceed 15 pages (including CVs).

  • Technical Approach: no longer than five (5) pages including the above-outlined sections.
  • Personnel: no longer than two (2) pages summarizing key personnel qualifications and experience within the technical proposal along with a description of the approach for recruiting other field staff for the data collection activity; CVs for key personnel should be included in the technical proposal, and altogether shall not exceed five (5) pages.
  • Past Performance: Three (3) past performance reports, including contact information for references, not exceeding three (3) pages. SI reserves the right to contact references provided in these past performance reports. At least one of these reports should include health care sector surveys in Vietnam.

Cost Proposals: No costing data should be included in the technical proposal. Instead, it should be saved in a separate document clearly marked. The cost proposal shall consist of a budget in Excel with traceable formulas and clear explanation of any assumptions made. Bidders are strongly encouraged (though not required) to use the budget template provided in Annex A to this RFP. Bidders can apply to conduct the work in either one or both cities. Costs should be presented in both VND and USD and should not exceed USD $15,000.00 if the bidders bid to conduct the work in one city, and should not exceed USD $30,000.00 if the bidders bid to conduct the work in both cities.

Bidders are also required to submit a budget narrative (Word or PDF) summarizing key assumptions in the budget.  Budget narratives should not exceed a total of five (5) pages.

Submission: Please use subject line “PROJECT NAME – RFP NUMBER”. Please send to all email addresses in the “Contact” field on page 1 by the deadline for proposals. Late submissions will not be accepted.

ANNEX A – BUDGET TEMPLATE

Job Details
Organisation Name:
USAID Learns/Social Impact
Application Deadline:
Sun, 2021-01-31
Candidates have to confirm having received the recruitment information through the recruiting channel NGO Recruitment in the application letter for this position

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