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NHS IT problems cost hospital £7m

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Problems with the government’s IT programme cost an NHS hospital more than £7m in the last year, it has been revealed.

Board documents published by the Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust in London, show that the implementation of the Cerner care record programme resulted in an unexpected £7.239m bill.

According to the papers, problems implementing the computer system cost £1.32m in lost activity, £3.789 in ‘potentially correctable’ data entry, £1.23m in staffing and £900,000 in ‘run rate losses’.

A trust spokesperson said: ‘The trust has lost £7.239m due to the implementation of the Care Records Service (Cerner) system.

‘As with any implementation of a system of this size and complexity, there have been a number of technical problems and unfortunately some have been worse than we anticipated.

‘A programme has been set up with BT, London Programme for IT and the system supplier, Cerner UK, to address these issues. BT and Cerner both have large teams on site and the programme is progressing.’

Shadow health minister Stephen O'Brien said: 'This cash should be used for caring for patients – instead it is pouring into the black hole of the Government’s supercomputer.'

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