The board in charge of Watford, St Albans and Hemel Hempstead hospitals has signed a major new multi-million contract that will see up to £25.5 million being invested into its IT systems over the next five years.
The investment will help to improve the care provided to patients, including speeding up the time it takes for them to be seen and treated.
The new contract will see millions of pounds being spent to replace old and outdated computers and other IT equipment. Staff at the hospitals – run by West Herts Hospitals Trust – will have the latest technology, including mobile devices such as tablets.
The investment will also put in place more reliable IT support services including a new 24/7 helpdesk for nurses, doctors and other staff who have IT problems.
In addition, it will deliver faster networks, improved telephone systems and increased IT security to support staff caring for patients and to help them share information quickly and securely.
Chief executive Samantha Jones said: “This is undoubtedly the single biggest investment in IT across Watford, Hemel Hempstead and St Albans hospitals for more than a generation.
“Our current IT systems are very old and are becoming more and more difficult for staff to use. They can be slow and it’s hard for us to connect them to the latest software.
“The new investment will help revolutionise the way that we work. The benefits for our patients, as well as staff, are immense and will truly help us to improve the care we provide to our patients.
“We will also be providing Wi-Fi across all three of our hospitals. The investment will help the Trust to make savings by being more efficient and speeding up the time it takes to do things.
“Our staff can expect to spend less time completing paperwork and have access to information at the touch of a button. Staff will also have their IT problems solved much quicker, freeing them up to carry on with their work.”
The contract has been signed with CGI. Calum MacLeod is vice-president of healthcare at CGI in the UK.
He said: “CGI is very excited to bring our experience of providing services that help modernise the delivery of healthcare in the UK and abroad to Watford, St Albans and Hemel Hempstead hospitals.
“We look forward to working with the Trust to support its vision of providing consistently good care to its patients.”