BT has secured a five-year NHS contract for Health and Social Care Network (HSCN) services for the South East of England.
The deal is expected to help doctors and medical teams in the region to better support patients’ needs by taking advantage of the next generation of cloud-based IT services, and access patient data securely over high-bandwidth digital connections.
Under the terms of the contract, 24 NHS Trusts and Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) across Oxfordshire, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Sussex and Kent will be able to place orders for a wide range of communications services from BT as they transition onto HSCN.
BT’s fully managed, high-speed Ethernet network, is at the heart of the services the company is providing. The Trusts and CCGs will be able to use a variety of the latest technologies to access clinical applications, unified communications, mobile applications and cloud communications services. Trusts and CCGs will be able to choose the connections best suited to meet the needs of their patients as they update their IT and communications services to take greater advantage of modern technologies, such as digital voice services, videoconferencing, superfast fibre broadband and high-speed Wi-Fi.
For example, the new network will help hospitals and GP’s surgeries to more easily and reliably access online patient care records, and use cloud-based services such as ‘choose and book’ for patient appointments. As a managed service provider, BT will work closely with all the organisations concerned to minimise the impact of the changeover on busy clinical and administrative teams.
Danny Longbottom, Director of Local Government and Health, BT said: “Secure, flexible, high speed connections are increasingly critical to delivering efficient, timely and patient-focused care. We’re proud to be working in partnership with NHS Digital to offer a huge range of services to eligible NHS Trusts and CCGs across the South East under this new contract, including embedded security enhanced features – an absolute must when dealing with sensitive patient data and relying on cloud-based applications.”
A survey of NHS organisations conducted by iGov on behalf of BT in 2017 found that nearly three-quarters of respondents anticipate that HSCN’s biggest benefit will be allowing health and social care providers to work more closely together, and that 40 per cent of organisations are looking to move to cloud-based solutions. The HSCN services provided by BT under this contract will help the NHS achieve these ambitions, helping them to build a smarter digital future.