Failed NHS IT system will cost £7m to stabilise

Lorenzo failure saw NHS Trust declare a ‘serious incident’ after 14,600 patient discharge summaries were not sent to GPs

Clinician's computer meltdown

A flawed IT system that led an NHS Trust to declare a serious incident' in July will cost 7 million to fix, the government has confirmed.

Faults in patients record management software Lorenzo led to potentially 14,600 patient discharge summaries not being sent to GPs between September 2017, when East and North Hertfordshire Hospital NHS Trust adopted the software, and July 2018.

Advertisement - Article continues below

The current estimates made by the Trust for work required to stabilise the IT system, developed by DXC Technology, is 7 million, according to junior health minister Jackie Doyle-Price MP.

Answering parliamentary questions put forward by the shadow health secretary Jon Ashworth MP, Doyle-Price also revealed that 21 Trusts also use Lorenzo, primarily based in the Midlands and the North of England.

"The Trust's foremost priority is to provide our patients with high quality care that keeps them safe from harm," said East and North Hertfordshire Hospital NHS Trust's medical director Dr Michael Chilvers.

"At present, there is no evidence that any patients have come to harm.

"The Trust is prioritising the review of discharge summaries for those patients where a follow-up action (such as a further appointment or test being carried out) might have been needed.

"These patients will have their records reviewed individually and should any outstanding actions be discovered, the Trust will take the lead in getting them sorted this will include informing any individual patients involved, as well as their GPs."

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

The Trust has also set up a Task and Finish action group, Doyle-Price added, comprising representatives from the Trust, GP practices as well as the ENH Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). The group will examine the status of unsent discharge summaries and provide clinical and operational oversight on managing the distribution of these documents.

An East and North Hertfordshire Hospital NHS Trust spokesperson told IT Pro the 7 million figure will not be allocated wholly on resolving discharge summaries, and that a further update from the Trust is due later today.

Lorenzo developer DXC Technology, previously known as CSC, sustained criticism five years ago in a controversy surrounding the NHS' National Programme for IT (NPfIT). Then chair of the public accounts committee Margaret Hodge MP branded the developer a "rotten company" and criticised IT procurement officials for giving Trusts millions of pounds to buy the Lorenzo software over other providers.

Although DXC offers Lorenzo to 21 Trusts, under previous arrangements stretching as far back as 2002 the developer had rights to supply 160 Trusts with software, but this never materialised.

Advertisement - Article continues below

The failure of both CSC and NPfIT to deliver, and a subsequent renegotiation of the contract, saw the scope of the company's involvement with the NHS reduced. The controversy was described as 'the biggest IT failure ever seen', with costs running into the billions of pounds.

IT Pro approached the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC), NHS Digital, the Labour Party, as well as the developer DXC Technology but did not get a response at the time of writing.

Featured Resources

The case for a marketing content hub

Transform your digital marketing to deliver customer expectations

Download now

Fast, flexible and compliant e-signatures for global businesses

Be at the forefront of digital transformation with electronic signatures

Download now

Why CEOS should care about the move to SAP S/4HANA

And how they can accelerate business value

Download now

IT faces new security challenges in the wake of COVID-19

Beat the crisis by learning how to secure your network

Download now
Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/strategy/28047/what-is-digital-transformation
Business strategy

What is digital transformation?

6 Mar 2020
Visit/business/business-strategy/354928/building-a-digital-nervous-system-for-your-business
Business strategy

Building a digital nervous system for your business

7 Mar 2020

Most Popular

Visit/infrastructure/server-storage/355785/dell-emc-poweredge-r7525-review-an-epyc-core-density-to-make
Server & storage

Dell EMC PowerEdge R7525 review: An EPYC core density to make Intel weep

26 May 2020
Visit/infrastructure/network-internet/355792/intel-releases-wi-fi-and-bluetooth-driver-updates-for
Network & Internet

Intel releases Wi-Fi and Bluetooth driver updates for Windows 10

26 May 2020
Visit/operating-systems/microsoft-windows/355781/microsoft-confirms-further-issues-with-troublesome
Microsoft Windows

Microsoft's latest Windows 10 update is causing yet more issues

26 May 2020