The NHS and private sector providers are increasingly coming under pressure to provide more efficient and cost-effective electronic facilities and solutions. Information technology is seen as a gateway to such improvement and Government expectations are high. The e-Government agenda anticipates that IT will provide the platform for such diverse issues as patient involvement, service transformation and bed-side access to patient records.
In this environment, IT departments are being asked to procure ‘leading edge’ solutions across a range of activities whilst achieving demonstrable ‘value for money’. This is further complicated by the ever-broadening scope of IT-driven functions – wireless CCTV, electronic purchasing and web-based FT membership programmes, to name just a few.
The Bevan Brittan IT team is a specialist team with a well-rounded understanding of the dynamic IT, Telecoms and Ecommerce market. It advises both customers (public and private sector) and providers of IT services and therefore understands IT issues from both perspectives. The variety of work undertaken ensures that we are familiar with the full range of IT products and services and have advised health clients on IT projects, covering matters such as:
- IT outsourcing and service contracts (e.g. financial, accounting and payroll services
- telecommunications procurements (including networks and infrastructure)
- hardware and software procurement
- web-based applications
- database rights
- intellectual property issues
The key skill we possess is our ability to think beyond the IT and legal issues. We appreciate the factors that will determine the success or failure of an IT procurement are not achievable simply by ‘ticking the boxes’. Success will depend on identifying the right commercial partner or on consulting with end-users and on understanding the wider context within which an IT project sits. IT is a crucial transformation tool but will not in itself deliver transformation.
Examples of our work includes:
- advising all the Trusts in a Strategic Health Authority on the disposal of a shared financial services and the subsequent outsourcing of the services provided by that organisation to NHS Shared Business Services Limited, a joint venture established between the Department of Health and Xansa Limited
- acting on behalf of 12 Welsh Trusts in relation to a procurement for the provision of financial management services. This transaction involved a sophisticated performance monitoring and payment deduction mechanism, which led to significant payments by the service provider to the Trusts
- advising a number of Trusts in England on the potential options available to them outside the scope of NHS Connecting for Health and also in the event of a failure to deliver by NHS Connecting for Health