Headlines: May 28th, 2003

The National Programme for IT in the National Health Service has announced progress on five specific key areas. They are confirmation of the formal long-list for Local Service Providers and the National Application Service Providers for the Integrated Care Record Service, publication of the Output Based Specification for the record service, finalisation of the geographic clusters for the LSP contracts, selection of the formal shortlist for the National Application Service Provider for the e-Booking service and posting of a contract notice for a National Infrastructure Service Provider.The programme has notified the successful candidates who have progressed from the pre-qualification stage of the procurement process. Twenty-two, comprising both individual companies and consortia, have been long-listed as potential LSPs and eight as potential NASPs.

A total of five LSP contracts will be available with England being grouped into five geographic clusters based on neighbouring Government Office regions and incorporating a number of Strategic Health Authorities. The areas will be London, the North East, Yorkshire and Humberside, the South East and South West, East of England and the East Midlands and the West Midlands and North West.

The Output Based Specification for phase one of the Integrated Records Service has been published with the prime purpose of providing sufficient detail on the specification and standards that any company delivering work to support the National Programme and the ICRS will need to meet. It is regarded as “a work in progress” with ongoing development and refinement being important to ensure continuing engagement with key stakeholders across the NHS and the delivery of a solution supporting patient-centred care and services.

The announcement says excellent progress has also been made towards the procurement of the electronic appointments booking system. Three candidates have been short listed as potential National Application Service Providers for an e-booking booking system for England.