13 May 2011 | Lindsay Clark
Prime Minister David Cameron has declared the NHS will not renew an agreement
with a key supplier for the National Programme for IT (NPfIT) until
value-for-money reviews are completed.
week he told parliament that, as yet, there were no plans to sign a new
contract with Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC), a key supplier to the
project, until reports from the Committee of Public Accounts (PAC) meetings and
the Cabinet Office’s Major Projects Authority are produced.
Department of Health and the Cabinet Office will examine all the available
options under the current contract, including the option of terminating some
of, or indeed all of, the contract,” he told Parliament.
was responding to questions from PAC member and Conservative MP Richard Bacon. Bacon
had previously urged the Department of
Health not to conclude contract negotiations with vendors until findings from
the reports had been analysed.
Prime Minister said: “We are very concerned that the NHS IT projects that we
inherited were of poor value for money, an issue we raised repeatedly in
opposition. According to the NationalAudit Office, even in 2008, delivery of the care records
system was likely to take four years more than planned. Since coming into
government, we have reviewed the projects with the intention of making the best
of what we have inherited.”
said the government had cut £1.3 billion from programme, including planned
savings of at least £500 million from CSC. “We are absolutely determined to achieve
better value for money,” he added.
NAO report on the project, which precedes a PAC investigation, is due to be
published next week.
the NPfIT started in 2003, CSC won a contract worth £973 million and has also
taken over contracts from Fujitsu, worth £896m, and Accenture, worth more than
statement from CSC said it was in the final stages of negotiating a non-binding
memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the NHS. “The MoU for the realigned NHS
programme is designed to offer the government greater value and flexibility,
while achieving desired saving in healthcare. The prime minister’s comments
confirmed that the NHS programme reviews must be completed before any NHS
agreement would be finalised.”