The UK has agreed to settle a lawsuit over how it selected an IT contractor for corona virus testing in its lighthouse labs.
The BBC understands that this solution will cost the government up to m 2 million.
British company Diagnostics AI said it had lost some of its positive corona virus cases to its rival, but lost to European competitor Eugene.
The government was sued over the decision, saying the selection process was “unfair and illegal”.
Lighthouse Labs is a network of specialized corona virus laboratories in the UK that are managed by the government and run by private companies. When labs were set up, companies began to analyze test results.
The controversy was to be conducted in court. It refers to the general test of the accuracy and speed of a test method, which is subject to severe criticism.
But the government has decided to settle the case and the detector will pay AI compensation and most of its legal fees.
However, despite agreeing to pay, the government has denied the detection AI’s claims, saying they were “false”.
“The tests are reliable and effective, and the labs that perform them have been reviewed and evaluated by experts. The percentage of false positives or positives is very small,” a Health and Social Security spokesman said.
“This is a commercial dispute over a software contract, subject to a number of factors prior to being awarded, subject to a final agreement on costs.”
Since the deal was worth more than m 1 million, the BBC understands that the settlement, including legal costs, could be around m 2 million.
Controversy over contract termination
Swabs are taken from test sites or those in home tests and treated with a map-making chemical process. The software is used to determine if the maps show whether the sample is positive or negative for the corona virus.
The diagnostic AI said Eugentech’s analysis of the 2,000 samples was flawed. In some cases, EugeneTech detected negative corona virus results, the results were actually positive or infinite.
“They finally decided to go and pay for what they missed to the 800 positive 50s [results], So it should be one in 15, or one in 16 – precisely – positive, “Aaron Cohen, chief executive of Detective AI, told the BBC.
“When it translates to hundreds of thousands of samples a day, it could leave thousands of missed positives every day. So it was very worrying for us.”
In response Eugentech said no patients were affected because it was a test run.
“We provide important Covid descriptive services to help lighthouse labs manage the vast amount of data they generate. These claims are false and misleading,” Steven Verhoeven, chief executive of EugeneTech, told the BBC.
“None of these models represent the actual results provided to patients or the public and are incorrect to indicate any public health impact. Direct tests are not supported by our software at the time of implementation. We have every confidence in the tests, our software and the services we provide as explained independently.”
‘A business dispute’
Two government-owned and funded nonprofits sued the detection AI – namely UK Biocentre and Medicines Delivery Catapult (MDC), which conducted the process of deciding which company to use.
Court documents show that from March 31 to April 14, the diagnostic AI repeatedly asked for information about what services were needed and how their auction would be evaluated.
Detection AI says it never received the information it asked for. This is denied by UK Biocentre, which claims to have provided the same information to both providers.
When both auctions were considered in early April, England faced a call from Boris Johnson “National Emergency Moment”.
In such emergencies, The law arranges If certain conditions are met, the government must purchase services without a competitive process.
However, it is understood that both the detection AI and Ugentec were recommended to the UK Biocentre, so it was decided to evaluate both offers.
Diagnosis AI says the process is unfair and flawed, but UK Biocentre insists it is fair to both bidders.
A spokesman for the UK Biocentre said: “The allegations are baseless; this is a commercial dispute. The software in question is widely used in lighthouse labs, some NHS labs and abroad.
“Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing in lighthouse laboratories, in which external quality assurance ensures that automated detection software acts as a component.”
An MDC spokesman also told the BBC: “The full results of the evaluation have identified Eugenete as a secure and quality provider, with a high level of delivery, and a comprehensive support system that has performed well over the past six months, analyzing more than eight million test results for the country.” The case is purely a commercial dispute. “
The BBC understands that investigations into the claims of the detection AI have been carried out, but concludes that concerns about the security of Eugenetec’s software are unfounded.
Mr Cohen, however, disagreed: “The government is paying a lot of money and they are paying for this, you know, to avoid at least part of it, to avoid these issues being aired in court, and to hold discussions beyond the accuracy of the test.”