Birmingham health trust covers £6.5m roll-out costs

Andrew Haw, the ICT director of university hospital Birmingham NHS foundation trust said his £6.5m plans for implementing the...

Andrew Haw, the ICT director of university hospital Birmingham NHS foundation trust said his £6.5m plans for implementing the national programme are fully funded.

He told the Autumn Forum conference in Birmingham last week, "We asked for £6.5m over three years; we have £6.5m over three years... At least one part of the NHS has fully resourced plans."

Haw's comments follow concerns among some IT professionals in the NHS that there will not be enough money to implement new national systems locally. One of the biggest potential costs is "backfill" - the cost of replacing doctors and nurses while they are training on new systems.

But Haw said his trust has avoided backfill costs. Asked by Sean Brennan, managing director of supplier Clinical Matrix, how he provided replacements for people who are training Haw replied, "I don't".

When hospitals introduce a major piece of equipment, clinicians are expected to train without anyone replacing them, he said. "If a clinician wants to learn how to use it, they learn how to do it. If they don't, they don't. If they want to, they will find the time."

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