By Richard Sharpe
Eighteen years ago this month the UK government of the day announced a massive project to try to turn the NHS into a paperless organisation. Over £5.5 billion of orders were placed with companies including Accenture, BT and Fujitsu in January 2004.
System House, published and edited by Richard Holway MBE, dubbed it the largest UK IT public procurement. It noted that EDS and IBM lost out. The real winner was iSoft which had spun out of KPMG in 1999. “Bluntly,” said System House, “if iSoft had not been chosen as the main software supplier for at least one LSP (Local System Provider) it would not have survived long. As it is this is the best possible outcome for iSoft.” It was chosen for three of the five regions covered in the contracts let that month. Two other parts of the work covered e-booking and a data spine as central services for the regions. Read the Report Here and See Richard Holway Interview Here
All did not go well in the UK’s largest public sector IT procurement. As a House of Commons Public Accounts Committee report published in 2020 said: “The Department’s [of Health] previous attempt to reform how the NHS uses IT, running between 2002 and 2011, was both expensive and largely unsuccessful.” Read the Report Here
“We are therefore alarmed at how little progress has been made against current ambitions. The NHS missed its main target for a ’paperless’ NHS by 2018, and this has now been watered down into a new target to reach a ’core level’ of digitisation by 2024.”
What went wrong?
Public Sector Projects
The London Ambulance Service
The Benefits of Getting it Right