The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is the principal agency for protecting the health and providing essential human services for all Americans, especially those least able to help themselves. HHS represents one fourth of all federal expenditures and administers more grant dollars than all other agencies combined. HHS’ Medicare program alone if the largest health insurer in the nation and administers more than $1 Billion in claims per year.
The programs and services of the department are administered by 11 operating divisions. The divisions include: 1. Administration for Children and Families, 2. Administration on Aging, 3. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, 4. Agency for Toxic substances and Disease Registry, 5. The CDC, 6. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, 7. The FDA, 8. Health Resources and Services Administration, 9. Indian Health Service, 10. National Institutes of Health, 11. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
In addition to the aforementioned operating divisions, there are additional key agencies and organizations that make up this large and intricate department. The Program Support Center is one such agency. The Program Support Center is a federal entity that provides support services to all of the agencies in HHS and other federal government agencies the world over. The services of the Program Support center include administrative operations, information technology support, financial management and strategic acquisitions. The job of this agency is basically to ensure that all of the other agencies have the support they need to achieve their objectives.
Because this department is so large and intricately woven into pretty much every facet of our lives, the contracting and grant opportunities here are legion. The HHS website does a great job (one of the best of the agencies I’ve discussed thus far) of educating businesses on how to best conduct business with HHS. The HHS also has its own Mentor-Protégé Program for small businesses who wish to work with or team with large companies for contracts.
With just a few clicks, you can get to the Forecast of HHS Contracting Opportunities for Small Business and have projections by quarter for all the money to be spent per agency, you can even drill down to find out specific bid descriptions, set asides (i.e. 8(a), Small business, GSA), and dollar amounts. Scrolling through a few I saw bid amounts ranging from $100,000 to $5 Million for services including fingerprinting, security, landscaping and translation services.
If you’d like to know more about this department that is responsible for about ¼ of all federal outlays, then attend the National Small Business Federal Contracting Summit in Washington, DC next Spring.