COMMERCIAL: East Midlands Ambulance Service has challenged the procurement process behind the award of contracts for patient transport services after it lost out on all of the contracts in the region.

NHS Derbyshire, the lead commissioner for the East Midlands, awarded all five contracts to NSL Ltd and Arriva.

The contracts are worth £19.8m to EMAS, equivalent to more than 10 per cent of the trust’s annual income.

A report to January’s board revealed the trust has appealed the quality scoring approach used to award the contracts.

It has accepted the appeal is unlikely to change the outcome in four of the five lots but is more hopeful of a rethink in Lincolnshire where EMAS already provides patient transport services in the North and North East of the county which come under the Yorkshire and Humber region.

A decision is expected imminently.