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DH looks to secure new contract for Choose and Book

22nd August 2012

The Department of Health is reported to be reviewing the software architecture for Choose and Book.

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As part of the process of re-procuring Choose and Book, it wants to remove the use of Cerner Millennium so it owns the intellectual property for the system’s functionality.

The present e-booking service is built on an implementation of Cerner’s Millennium product, but the Department islooking to release itself from dependency on commercial-off-the-shelf products for the provision of business functionality and data access.

A Department of Health market engagement exercise document states: “We are interested in understanding proposals for how the existing software architecture could be modified to reduce licence/operating/change costs – for example by removal of dependencies on commercial-off-the-shelf products - for the provision of business functionality and data access and adoption of open-source products.”

The aim is for the NHS to own all the intellectual property rights for all Choose and Book business functionality.

Cerner has issued a statement saying that it welcomes the government’s decision to explore further flexibility within Choose and Book.

The current contract for Choose and Book is with Atos Healthcare, which will continue to provide the service during procurement and transition up until December 2013, though the company has come under National Audit Office scrutiny recently over its £110m-a-year contract with the Department of Work and Pensions to assess whether people are fit for work.

While acknowledging work is underway to secure a new contract and system for Choose and Book, a Department of Health spokesman said no decision on the details has yet been made.

 

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