IBA iba health group limited

nhs discontent a possible bonus for iba

  1. 654 Posts.
    Seems like the NHS are pretty dis-satisfied with one of the software suppliers... and it's not iSoft! If Cerner don't pull their socks up it may mean their NHS contracts being awarded elsewhere... and IBA may be one to benefit from that!

    Granger says he is 'ashamed' of some systems provided
    10 Jul 2007

    The departing head of the NHS IT programme Richard Granger has said he is ashamed of the quality of some of the systems put into the NHS by Connecting for Health suppliers, singling Cerner out for criticism.

    Going further than he before in acknowledging the extent of failings of systems provided to some parts of the NHS - such as Milton Keynes – the Connecting for Health boss, said "Sometimes we put in stuff that I'm just ashamed of. Some of the stuff that Cerner has put in recently is appalling."

    He said a key reason for the failings of systems provided was that Cerner and prime contractor Fujitsu had not listened to end users. "It really isn't usable because they have building a system with Fujitsu without listening to what end users want. They have taken some account but they then had to take a lot more. Now they are being held to account because that's my job."

    The latest remarks, quoted in an interview in the current issue of CIO magazine, appear to make a nonsense of Granger's June statement that unless agreement was reached between Computer Sciences Corporation and iSoft over its acquisition by IBA Health, Cerner could wind up as the system used across the whole of the English NHS.

    In December 2005 Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre became the first NHS site to go live with Cerner Millennium under the NHS IT programme. It has since suffered a string of problems ranging from missing appointment records, to inability to report on wait times. The Millennium system – now installed at six NHS locations in the South – remains unable to directly integrate with Choose and Book or meet 18-week reporting requirements.

    In April, 79 members of staff from Milton Keynes NHS Trust signed a letter outlining their frustrations at the Millennium system, stating: "In our opinion the system should not be installed in any further hospitals.

    CfH said there had been some "unacceptable problems" with the new system installed at Milton Keynes. The hospital trust was subsequently visited by Granger and NHS chief executive David Nicholson to learn of the problems first hand.

    At the end of June, David Wrede, a senior consultant at Taunton and Somerset Hospital NHS Trust, exasperated by almost a dozen cancelled go-live dates, gave vent to his frustrations with the version of the Millennium system on offer from Fujitsu the local service provider in the South.

    Speaking at the BMA's annual representative meeting on 29 June Wrede said: "We should have a public inquiry. The people who made the original Cerner contract should be brought to book and as Cerner Millennium R0 [release zero] is not fit for purpose…" The motion calling for a public enquiry was passed.

    The first Cerner installation by BT, the NPfIT contractor in London, is scheduled to go live at Barnet and Chase Farm NHS Trust within the next week. The trust is understood to be due to recieve the same release zero version of the Millennium software that has so far been used in the South. Later sites in London will use London-specific versions of the software.

    Granger also cast further light on Accenture's departure from the NPfIT programme at the end of 2006, describing their relationship with sub-contractor iSoft as a failed marriage, in which they had failed to realise their co-dependency. He contrasted the relationship with iSoft with Accenture's performance on Picture Archiving and Communication Systems with Agfa as its sub-contractor. "When they work with a mature, high quality vendor that recognises Accenture as in charge and they're doing it their way, you get a quite good deal and they'll do the job."

    The CfH boss goes on to state that he has been careful to avoid Stockholm syndrome -identifying with suppliers' interests rather than those of the NHS - as problems have mounted.

    "One supplier asked for an extra £500m to deal with cost overruns. He received a succinct refusal but there are many places where the response would have been different; where threats of bad publicity and contract disputes would persuade an organisation to start bunging millions of pounds a month in addition to the existing contract, just to cover up," says Granger.

    Elsewhere in the in-depth valedictory interview carried out ahead of Granger announcing his resignation, he rounds on critics and erstwhile colleagues, saying. "Either people are really stupid or evil. It's difficult to be compassionate with people who claim that suppliers are going out of business because they are not getting paid or they were withdrawing from wishing to do business with the NHS. At the same time, they are saying they [the suppliers] have been bunged millions of pounds that weren't budgeted for. It's stupid or wicked."

    He reserves particular ire for so-called experts. "There is a little coterie of people out there who are alleged experts and who worked on this programme. They were dismissed for reasons of non-performance or in one case, for breach of commercial confidentiality.

    "He actually sent our financial model to a supplier and that's why we suspended him. He then resigned which is an answer in itself."

    Granger continued: "Who contributed evidence to the public accounts committees? For just about every figure quoted as an expert in this programme, I've got HR files on them. They generate a piece of opinion that often substantiates their world view."

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