Sheffield Teaching Hospitals abandon purchase of new electronic system worth tens of millions

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has put on hold a tender worth tens of millions of pounds which would see a new electronic patient record system installed in its hospitals.

Thursday, 13th May 2021, 9:58 am

In August 2020 the Trust issued the tender for the new electronic patient record (EPR), for which the total cost would amount to tens of millions of pounds in purchasing the system, training staff and maintenance over the years-long duration of its use at the hospitals.

However, following the tender process, the Trust has decided not to spend the money at this point, as it did not find a suitable candidate out of all of the EPR systems offered to them.

Kirsten Major, Chief Executive, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust explained: “We had started a procurement process for an electronic patient record (EPR) system in advance of our current contract coming to an end in 2025.

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Northern General Hospital, Sheffield..21st March 2019 ..Picture by Simon Hulme

"The purchase of a new EPR is one of the biggest decisions our organisation will make in the next decade and the choice we make will impact on how we deliver care not just now but into the future.

"Whilst we want maximum benefits in terms of ease of use, adaptability and clinical decision support we also have to balance our aspirations with what is affordable in light of other necessary patient care commitments moving forward.

"After a review of all of the information available from the procurement process to date we made the decision to stop the process.

"We will now take a short period of time to decide what the next steps will be and take the opportunity to reflect on our post COVID world and how we have been working for the past 15 months.

"The learning and work carried out to date is not wasted and has proved invaluable in terms of bringing clarity to what we need in the future to deliver the quality of care and patient/staff experience we want to provide.

"This work will also very much inform the next steps that we take in our journey of digital development. Patient care will not be impacted because we will continue to have the existing system in place.”