Wednesday, 23 September 2009

iSoft, Cerner, InterSystems make Wales NHS shortlist

(By Tola Sargeant, Wednesday 23rd Sept., 09:20am) Informing Healthcare, the organisation in charge of Wales’ healthcare IT programme, has announced the shortlist of suppliers for the new national Laboratory Information Management system contract. The three shortlisted suppliers for the £7.9m contract, which is due to be awarded in a couple of months, are: iSoft, Cerner and InterSystems. The national networked pathology system will replace the 13 different applications in use by Wales’ 18 pathology labs from 2010.

While the contract is not huge, it is interesting because of the marked contrast to the way national systems were rolled out by the National Programme for IT in the NHS (NPfIT) in England. Gwyn Thomas, Chief Executive of Informing Healthcare, has made change management a priority, recognising it as more important than arbitrary timescales. He has also gone out of its way to ensure buy-in from local clinicians – something NPfIT was late to acknowledge as important. The Welsh IT agency is demonstrating the three systems at road shows across the country giving relevant clinicians the chance to share their views. Local staff will also be involved in formulating deployment plans.

We also spotted a couple of other bits of healthcare news this week that are worthy of note. In a further, albeit small, extension to its healthcare business, Capita has won a £3.3m contract from NHS Hounslow to provide ICT managed services (see also Capita sinks its teeth into the NHS). We expect more trusts to opt for similar deals as spending cuts bite. And, in a rare piece of good news for NPfIT, CSC, the Local Service Provider for the North, East and Midlands, has deployed its 1000th GP system. Great news for UK minnow TPP, whose SystmOne software CSC is now using in primary care.

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