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27 September 2011 | Angeline Albert
Buyers at Barts and The LondonNHS Trust expect to save £320,000 this year by reducing its selection of medical gloves
from 20 to just two.
The trust’s procurement team had been spending £700,000 annually on
gloves, but has almost halved its expenditure by reducing the number of suppliers
to one, in addition to reducing choice.
of procurement Zoe Greenwell said: “We have moved to one supplier and we will
be saving £320,000 this year just by standardising to a better value product.”
A spokesman for the NHS trust said the change had not been made as a
result of a National Audit Office (NAO) report earlier
this year, which criticised the fact that 652 different types of rubber gloves
were purchased for staff by NHS trusts across England. “We have an ongoing
programme where we contact our suppliers to try to find savings,” he said.
In its damning report published in February, the NAO said fragmented purchasing of basic supplies, including
medical equipment and stationery, across the NHS represents “poor value for
money”. The NAO estimated at least £500 million of the NHS’s £4.6 billion-a-year
spend could be saved annually if trusts bought in a more collaborative way.
By 2015, the NHS must find £15 billion-£20 billion of annual