Health Canada Procurement Plan (Acquired Services) 2021–22

Purpose of the procurement plan

Health Canada's Procurement Plan complements the department's activities in support of proactive disclosure. The Procurement Plan is designed to provide a high level summary of the department's planned procurement activities for the fiscal year 2021-22. The plan neither represents a solicitation or a request for proposal, nor is it a commitment by the Government to purchase any of the described property or services.

The objective of government procurement

Government contracting must be conducted in a manner that will:

  • Stand the test of public scrutiny in matters of prudence and honesty, facilitate access, encourage competition and reflect fairness in the spending of public funds
  • Ensure the pre-eminence of operational requirements
  • Support long-term industrial and regional development and other appropriate national objectives, including aboriginal economic development
  • Comply with the government's obligations under the Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA), the World Trade Organization Agreement on Government Procurement (WTO-AGP), the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP)

Source: Treasury Board of Canada Contracting Policy

Key procurement drivers

Health Canada has a Departmental Results Framework with two core responsibilities:

  1. Health care systems

Health Canada provides national leadership to foster sustainable health care systems that ensure access for Canadians to appropriate and effective health care.

Under the Health Care Systems core responsibility, Health Canada provides national leadership to foster sustainable health care systems. This is mainly achieved through partnerships with provincial and territorial governments and support through targeted funding agreements to organizations and key pan-Canadian health partners that are contributing to health system improvements.

  1. Health protection and promotion

Health Canada works with domestic and international partners to assess, manage and communicate the health and safety risks and benefits associated with health and consumer products, food, chemicals, pesticides, environmental factors, tobacco and controlled substances.

Within the health protection and promotion core responsibility, Health Canada works with domestic and international partners to help protect Canadians by identifying health and safety risks. These risks are managed through rigorous regulatory frameworks and by communicating risks and benefits to Canadians so that they can make informed decisions. This work relates to the health and safety of health and consumer products, food, chemicals, pesticides, environmental factors such as air and water quality, tobacco and controlled substances, including cannabis. The distinction between the roles of Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada is outlined in the descriptions of the Core Responsibilities, and expressed in unique departmental results statements and indicators.

Health Canada will deliver on its results for Canadians, in part, through procurement activities that support the priority areas identified in the 2021-22 Health Canada Departmental Plan.

A key consideration for the department is the need for flexibility and agility in its procurement planning and execution within the confines of Government of Canada legislation and policies related to procurement, as well as national and international trade agreements.

Governance and procurement standards


HC has a robust governance structure in place for monitoring and controlling its procurement activities. The structure includes automatic electronic standardized business process mapping through the departmental financial system (SAP), which includes a procurement specialist review and functional oversight through a two-tier Contract Review Committee to ensure compliance with policies and regulations.

Procurement management activities (planning, tendering, acquisition and closure) are subject to reviews and audits by various organizations, including the Office of the Auditor General, Health Canada's Audit and Accountability Bureau, and the Office of the Procurement Ombudsman. Findings that strengthen the department's procurement processes are addressed through an audit Management Report Action Plan and its implementation is subject to oversight through the department's Executive Committee on Planning and Accountability as well as Health Canada's Departmental Audit Committee.

Procurement standards

Health Canada is committed to ensuring that competitive procurement is standard practice, whenever possible. To support this, the Department adheres to the following practices:

Tendering process

Buy and sell

The website is an on-line system that advertises government contracting opportunities to potential bidders.

Health Canada publishes Advanced Contract Award Notices (ACAN) through the website to notify suppliers of the intent to award a contract directly to a supplier and to consider statements of qualifications from any suppliers capable of fulfilling the requirement.

Planned procurement volumes

The Department's procurement planning process allows it to identify economies of scale through consolidation of acquisitions, resulting in increased flexibility, avoiding delays through greater use of Standing Offer Agreements and identifying opportunities for enhanced service delivery.

As part of this process, all branches within the Department are requested to identify their planned expenditure activity for acquired services. For the 2021-22 fiscal year, this exercise resulted in the identification of planned expenditures with an estimated value of $178.7 million, as follows:

Figure 1. Planned Procurement Summary - Acquired Services

Planned Procurement Summary - Acquired Services
Figure 1 - Text Description

A pie chart illustrating the dollar value of the department has planned procurement of acquired services, materials and supplies by G/L grouping

  • Professional and special services: $119,876,285
  • Other services: $7,813,767
  • Rentals: $10,058,750
  • Repairs and maintenance: $3,217,253
  • Transportation & telecommunications: $5,277,235
  • Materials and supplies: $9,546,164
  • Information services: $22,894,543

Grand total: $178,683,998

Professional and special services account for approximately 67% of planned procurement activities broken down as follows:

Figure 2. Planned Professional and Special Services by GL Group

Figure 2: planned professional services by G/L group
Figure 2 - Text Description

A pie chart illustrating the dollar value of the department has planned procurement of professional and special services by G/L grouping

  • Informatics services: $27,057,076
  • Other professional services: $37,797,218
  • Health and welfare services: $36,666,042
  • Engineering, architectural and scientific services: $8,401,409
  • Training and educational services: $5,901,788
  • Protection services $3,218,778
  • Accounting and legal services: $236,265
  • Internal support professional services: $597,709

Grand total: $119,876,285

These figures, while only an indicator of planned procurement activity within the department, represent a significant portion of the volume of procurements likely to be undertaken, based on the following historical figures:

Table 1.0 – Historical volumes of contracting commitments $10,000 and up undertaken by the department (2018-2021)




Number of Contracts




Total Dollar Value of Agreements




Source: Materiel Management Module in SAP July 2021

Procurements outside of those forecasted in this document include the following:

Items that are frequently procured for the department include:

Rationale for procurement decisions

Procurement decisions are based upon a number of factors. A main consideration is a life cycle approach to materiel management, and includes:

Health Canada supports the objectives of the Policy on Green Procurement, including incorporating environmental performance considerations and value for money into the procurement decision-making process.

Cost savings, synergies and value added considerations, such as "greening," are also factored and contribute to the procurement decisions made by program managers.

Additional Information for Suppliers

For more information on becoming a supplier to the Government of Canada, please refer to Public Services and Procurement Canada.

Suppliers are also encouraged to consult the Public Service and Procurement Canada website on a regular basis to seek opportunities to become Health Canada and Government of Canada suppliers.

For any additional enquiries related to Health Canada procurement, please contact:

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