Skip to main content

NHS: Information and Communications Technology

Volume 503: debated on Wednesday 6 January 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) whether he plans to renegotiate the National programme for IT contracts for the delivery of the Care Records Service with (a) BT for its delivery of the Spine, (b) CSC for its delivery of iSOFT's Lorenzo and (c) BT for its delivery of Cerner Millennium; (307705)

(2) what components of the National programme for IT will have their budgets ring-fenced from the proposed efficiency saving outlined in the pre-Budget report, Cm 7747.

Decisions on where efficiency savings will be found remain to be taken. They will depend partly on the outcome of discussions with suppliers about the potential for reductions to the scope of the systems, and any contractual consequences. We will also look carefully at the savings that can be made from the costs of managing delivery of the programme.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health by what date BT is expected to complete the implementation of Cerner Millennium in each of the 12 trusts in its Southern Local Service Provider structure; and how much BT will be paid on completion of this work. (307707)

BT took over responsibility for the Cerner Millennium system at eight sites in the southern programme for information technology (IT) area, which were previously covered by a contract with Fujitsu Services Ltd, in July 2009. BT has been contracted to upgrade six of the trusts to an enhanced version of Cerner Millennium. BT first needs to transfer these systems from Fujitsu's data centre to its own, and is on schedule to complete this work before the end of March 2010. Timing of completion of the upgrades will depend on the outcome of ongoing discussion between the national health service locally and the company. Discussions are continuing with BT with regard to implementing Cerner Millennium at some further sites in the southern programme for IT area.

The increase in the total lifetime value of the BT local service provider contract consequent on transfer to the company of elements of work in the southern programme area previously covered under contract with Fujitsu, assuming all the requirements are successfully delivered, is £546 million.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) pursuant to the pre-Budget report, Cm 7747, what discussions his Department has had with (a) HM Treasury and (b) suppliers to the National Programme for IT on changes to the National Programme for IT budgets; and on what dates such meetings took place; (307704)

(2) what discussions he has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on the National Programme for IT and the front line of the NHS.

Since its inception, the Department has consulted and communicated with its national health service stakeholders, including clinicians, senior NHS managers and information management and technology staff, and the medical professional representative and health regulatory bodies, on a frequent and regular basis about all aspects of the NHS information technology programme. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State has also often discussed issues relating to the programme in his regular meetings with the Chancellor.

As part of the current Government-wide drive to find efficiency savings and better value for money on major projects, officials are holding ongoing discussions with the Treasury, and with suppliers, about how these might be generated in relation to the national programme.