Two new hospitals award 37-year £67.6m comms contract

Two new North Staffordshire hospitals have awarded a 37-year IT contract worth £67.6m.

Two new North Staffordshire hospitals have awarded a 37-year IT contract worth £67.6m.

Comms integrator Affiniti has been awarded the PFI contract for two hospitals currently being built and to support comms at existing hospital sites.

The overall PFI construction project is worth £361 million and was awarded to Healthcare Support (North Staffs) Ltd, a consortium between John Laing Social Infrastructure and Sodexho.

From December 2007, Affiniti, a Kingston Communications business, will take on responsibility for managing all of the existing voice and data systems for the current buildings that make up the University Hospital of North Staffordshire and Haywood Hospital, with approximately 3,000 users.

As the new buildings and systems come on line, these too will be incorporated within the managed service. At the same time, Affiniti will be responsible for designing and implementing communications systems for the two new hospitals to be constructed in the Stoke-on-Trent area.   

Through North Staffordshire’s Fit for the Future healthcare project, the advanced ICT services from Affiniti will enable clinicians and other hospital staff to log in and work anywhere, from laptops, IP phones and PDAs.

They will be able to access information from anywhere on campus, whether inside or outside of buildings, helping them to perform tasks more efficiently, including diagnosing and monitoring patients.

The services will include unified communications with campus-wide wireless, IP telephony and mobile deployment.  Video conferencing facilities and a small contact centre will also be deployed.

The ICT services will also underpin the facilities management services as well as medical equipment and clinical applications such as the Picture Archiving Communications Systems (PACS).

The Haywood Hospital will be completed by 2009, and the University Hospital of North Staffordshire is expected to be ready in 2014. 

Affiniti will maintain a permanent onsite network management team with service delivery, engineering and operations staff to provide day-to-day support and help in maintaining the high priority service levels.

Affiniti will also be responsible for periodically refreshing the technology over the lifetime of the contract.

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