NPfIT a spiralling disaster, says BMA leader

Dr Jonathan Fielden, chair of the BMA’s Consultants Committee, said the value of electronic patient records had been established, but that the National Programme for IT in the NHS [NPfIT] was taking too long to deliver them. “At what stage do we cut loose from this spiralling disaster?” he asked.

E-Health Insider reports Fielden as saying that the NPfIT is “thwarting local chances to move forward; the worst case of planning blight across the NHS. Let’s free hospitals to move forward. Keep the ‘national electronic super-highway’ but free trusts to go their own way. It will be faster; it will deliver for patients, meet the needs of clinicians and produce another massive saving.”

Far from scrapping the NPfIT, officials at NHS Connecting for Health and the Department of Health have paid BT an extra £500m to remain in the national programme. Research analyst Tola Sargeant at Ovum says that BT had the NHS “somewhat over a barrel”.

It’s an astonishing amount of money to pay BT. It’s as if the government has ascribed to the NPfIT the status of a mini-bank which is in need of State aid to keep afloat.

BMA leader calls for NPfIT to be scrapped – E-Health Insider