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Essex trust signs five-year network connectivity contract with Capita  


By Léa Legraien
Reporter
22 October 2018

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Capita has been awarded a five-year contract to deliver network services to more than 400 NHS organisations across the East of England.

Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (EPUT) said yesterday that Capita will be delivering ‘wide area connectivity’ to over 400 NHS sites, including hospitals, clinics and GP practices, after signing a five-year contract worth £5.7m.

The organisations are located in Essex, Suffolk and Bedfordshire and are operated by 24 different partners.

Improving data sharing

The service aims to increase bandwidth and allow better connectivity between the different organisations.

Until now, EPUT has been using the NHS National Network, also known as N3. In March 2017, a new data network – the Health and Social Care Network (HSCN) – gradually started to replace N3 to help health and social care organisations ‘access and share information more reliably, flexibly and efficiently’, NHS Digital said.

Work on the requirements to launch HSCN, including installation and upgrades, began in September. Once these have been completed, the services will be delivered to all sites involved over a 12-month implementation period due to start this autumn

Capita said this is the ‘largest’ HSCN contract to date and the ‘first NHS Digital collaborative procurement’.

EPUT chief finance officer Mark Madden said: ‘We need a reliable and robust connectivity solution to deliver enhanced connectivity.

‘We’re confident that this implementation will enhance the user-experience for our employees and enable greater interaction and sharing of resources between our sites in the Essex region.’

Delivering ‘lower running costs’

Capita said it will ‘deliver lower-running costs’ and ‘potential value-added’ services such as Wi-Fi, secure remote access and voice-activated solutions.

Capita IT and Networks executive officer Joe Hemming commented: ‘Capita is an experienced provider of IT networks and this contract further reinforces our strategy.

‘We look forward to using our technology capabilities to add value and efficiencies for NHS sites across the region.’

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