North Bristol NHS Trust busts EPR budget by £1.2m

By Sooraj Shah
02 May 2012 View Comments

North Bristol NHS Trust has spent £1.2m more than projected on rolling out healthcare solution provider Cerner's electronic patient record (EPR) system.

The original budget for the project was £3.9m but the Trust has so far spent more than £4.5m on the system, with the majority spent during January and February this year. It expects to spend a further £600,000 on the project.

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"The forecast spend on the project is £5.1m, which represents a considerable overspend on the project as a result of the problems encountered," the Trust said.

Ruth Brunt, chief executive of the Trust, explained that the overspend was due to using additional staff and technical resources.

"The extra costs associated with implementing our new electronic patient record system are largely down to providing more IT technical resource to re-launch the system and in employing extra floor walkers to assist staff across our hospitals to ensure that services could run as smoothly as possible for patients. There were also some additional hardware costs for equipment," she said.

Brunt added that extra staff were needed to resolve issues with data migration of clinic lists, and although the implementation went as planned in many departments, the trust had significant problems in the outpatients department and in some operating theatres.

She said that the Trust has now overcome these difficulties and that it is working to "consolidate and optimise the system" as it prepares to move to a new hospital in 2014.

An independent review on the issues encountered with the EPR system has been commissioned by the Trust.

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