Thursday, 13 June 2013

UK MPs Not Impressed with "Rotten" CSC

The news this week is full of uncomplimentary statements about CSC which as we all know cannot sell a life belt to drowning man but with UK government's backing is 'selling' more of its NHS IT to users who do not want it. On this basis CSC UK could fire all its sales staff and still sell at least one product since the UK Government is actually bribing NHS units to use it.

Read these extracts and links to see how bad things are:


NHS still set to spend £600m with 'rotten' CSC on 'hopeless' NPfIT systems

The Public Accounts Committee grilled executives on the failed project

The NHS is still set to spend nearly £600 million on Lorenzo patient record systems provided by CSC, despite the failure of the government’s National Programme for IT (NPfIT).
Senior executives from the NHS were grilled today by the parliamentary Public Accounts Committee, where chair Margaret Hodge called CSC a “rotten company” and said the Lorenzo system was “hopeless”.
She and other members of the committee expressed disbelief at the mismanagement of the CSC contract by the NHS, where it is still dishing out hundreds of millions of pounds to the company despite it having failed to deliver on a number of key targets over a ten year period
Read on:

TECHWEEK Europe reports

NHS To Spend £2.2bn On ‘Rotten’ CSC NPfIT Work

The much-maligned NPfIT was canned in 2012 but CSC is still making a load of money from its Lorenzo contract
The NHS will spend an additional £1.1 billion on CSC software and services as part of the much-maligned National Programme for IT (NPfIT), meaning the IT supplier will receive £2.2 billion for a project that was canned last year.
The project is supposed to be winding down thanks to major shortcomings on the part of the IT supplier.
Under the original 2003 contract, CSC was supposed to have delivered the Lorenzo electronic patients’ records system by 2005 to 166 different NHS bodies, yet by 2011 it had only made it to 10, following contract renegotiations.
Thanks to manifold failures bythe NHS and CSC, the whole NPfIT initiative was scrapped in September 2012, but it was clear Lorenzo would continue to be deployed.

NPfIT nightmare

It emerged yesterday, during a Public Accounts Committee hearing on NPfIT, another £500m had been set aside by the NHS for the CSC Lorenzo contract, whilst another £100 million could be used to support as many as 22 NHS Trusts that want to run the software.
The full amount set aside for CSC’s total NPfIT work, including non-Lorenzo services, stands at £2.2 billion, £1.1 billion of which has already been paid, the PAC heard from Tim Donohoe, senior responsible owner for local service provider programmes at the NHS. Donohoe claimed the NHS had secured “a good deal for the taxpayer”.
Chair of the PAC, Margaret Hodge, said the announcement of NPfIT’s closure appeared to have been a “PR exercise”, as she described CSC as a “rotten company providing a hopeless system”.
“I call it a deck chairs on the Titanic exercise, you were shifting the way you were running it, but you were keeping all the expenditure going,” Hodge added.
Asked why the NHS had gotten itself into a position where it was cheaper to keep the CSC contract than fight it in courts, Donohoe said “we didn’t have a strong negotiating position because of the contracts”.
“We have sought over time to reduce our contractual exposure with CSC,” he added. “Options around terminating the contract… would not have offered good value for money.”
The NHS has also handed CSC £2.9 million in legal fees since it started negotiations to kill the contract in 2010.
CSC remains largely unapologetic and proud of its work, emailing TechWeekEurope the following response to yesterday’s comments: “CSC has delivered a wide range of critical systems to help the NHS reach its goal of improving patient care,” the company said.
“CSC has been a strong partner to the NHS and currently has more than 2,500 systems operating across the UK as part of the NPfIT, contributing to advances in primary care, acute care and emergency services.”
What do you know about public sector IT and its many failures? Try our quiz!


NPfIT legacy: NHS yet to spend £600m on CSC Lorenzo patient records

The NHS has still to spend £600m on the Lorenzo patient record systems system provided by CSC, according to the Public Accounts Select Committee (PASC).

The original value of the contract was £3.1bn at 2006/7. Since then the NHS has reduced its contractual exposure with CSC, with the company originally having exclusive rights to supply to 160 trusts.
To date government has spent £1.1bn with CSC, with that figure rising to £2.2bn over the total life of the contract.
So far Morecambe Bay is the only trust to have a Lorenzo system across a major hospital.
“You’re going to spend another half billion with the rotten company to supply hopeless software,” said Margaret Hodge, PASC chair.
“After 10 years of failing to deliver a product on time we are now going to give them potentially another 100 million in so-called success payments.”

Sir David Nicholson, chief executive for the NHS in England, said: “When we cancelled the contract with Fujitsu, the advice we were given at the time was that everything would be fine. But of course several years later we are still involved in legal details.”
Read on.

The Daily Telegraph today comments on the bribery tactics being used by the government. Tactics which only benefit CSC. What is going on here? Is there an agenda not disclosed to the public?


Anonymous said...

FYI, Tom Hogan (Executive Vice President & General Manager, Global Business Service) is leaving CSC or, rather, CSC has accepted his resignation (effective immediatly).

Fight for survival in Falls Church. Who's next ?

Anonymous said...

I was told Hogan was a good guy, a "gentleman". Maybe he could no longer stomach what is going on?

Anonymous said...

Did Tom Hoagen ever try to stop the NHS desaster? Or is this huge damage of the image a result of his actions by let NHS run as before his time?


Answer: NHS happened long before TH's time. He just has to deal with disastrous damage to CSC's reputation that this debacle caused.

Anonymous said...

To add some bucks for the bucket of this Healthcare's bill, here is something to follow on july :

The reason of this "deep concerns" can be read here :

Anonymous said...

Thanks to the miracle of open government, the reported proceedings were streamed and have been recorded for posterity. To see the full horror-show of Ms Hodge, Mr Bacon and Mr Barclay demonstrating their utter contempt for CSC, Lorenzo, and the NHS management of NPfIT, tune in to:

Meanwhile, how the hell did CSC persuade the George Eliot NHS Trust (Nuneaton) and Ipswich Hospital NHS Trust to take Lorenzo, as announced on 20/6?

Anonymous said...

looks to me like CSC tried to foolish the UK gov. Very bad.

Anonymous said...

Whilst I'm sure CSC is far from innocent in this saga, I'd be very very surprised if the main reasons for the late delivery actually fall at the company's feet.

Having worked extensively in the public sector, my experience has shown that public sector projects, especially large ones fail because of the incompetence of their systems & process, the huge number of committees and quangos to get approvals, and the political machinations that go on in the background. Delay after delay on approvals, or approvals that are reversed because someone "didn't have appropriate authority", requires militant attention to change control processes, which I suspect CSC possibly slacked off on in order to maintain a good client relationship (CSC has a pattern in this area).

Unfortunately when the chickens come home to roost, the politicians don't understand this detail and will do their level best to point a finger of blame, and if that falls on a private company, then whatever the company's intent, it will be hung out to dry.

Lesson to be learned?

If you're going to enter into obscenely large government contracts, make sure to:

a. Ensure the contract is watertight.
b. Maintain militant change control.
c. Constant positive PR.
d. Dig up some dirt on the politicians involved just in case.

Anonymous said...

I would agree with Anonymous (26 June) that the blame is not solely on CSC. If you recall, Accenture had the NHS contract before CSC got it. They also had huge problems and ended up cutting their losses and walking away from it. This was always going to be a huge risk with very high stakes.