Experts are now predicting that a deal together with NHSX (the NHS’ open source digital transformation organisation), NHS Digital and Microsoft will save hundreds of millions of pounds plus cause an uplift in productivity for the health service.
This agreement is already being described as “game changing” by a leading technology expert: Marc Schmid from Redmoor Health – a healthcare provider based in Lancashire. As a part of this deal, all eligible organisations within the NHS (affecting approximately 1.2 million staff) including CCGs, health infomatic and technology services providers; will have access to Microsoft 365’s digital tools platform. This platform will enable digital transformation across all NHS practices (that are eligible), meaning there is much easier chance of collaboration between the different departments making things much more efficient.
This kind of change is absolutely imperative now that we are finding ourselves in a forced-transition to digital and cloud solutions thanks to the impact of lockdown due to the Coronavirus crisis.
Marc, who’s company Redmoor Health was recently appointed as a Microsoft co-seller partner, is now helping support this deployment across healthcare services and other NHS practices.
“It’s impossible to underestimate the importance of this announcement,” said Marc in a recent interview.
COVID-19 has changed healthcare forever and the way technology is perceived. At the start of the pandemic Microsoft made their Microsoft Teams software available free-of-charge to NHS staff and it’s been transformational.”
COVID-19 forced doctors and the NHS to work remotely and placed unprecedented pressure on the healthcare system but technology allowed doctors, nurses and support staff across the NHS to collaborate and continue their vital work.
The partnership between NHSX, NHS Digital and Microsoft will create a truly joined-up NHS.” he continued in a statement regarding how important and impactful this new partnership could be for the NHS and it’s staff, navigating their way through existing and somewhat archaic systems.
This deal means that GPs, nurses, paramedics and various support staff will be able to collaborate much more efficiently and effectively, through messaging, video calls and the ability to share screen and documents instantly.
As a part of this agreement, it is understood that MS365 will be pushed out to all NHS organisations. The health secretary Matt Hancock said:
“Adopting the most up-to-date digital tools and operating systems are crucial for a modern day NHS – allowing staff to work as efficiently as possible which will deliver even better care for patients.
We have seen incredible, innovative uses of technology throughout the NHS during the COVID-19 pandemic and this new deal with Microsoft will pave the way for that to continue by ensuring we get the basics right.”
The CEO of NHSX Matthew Gould said: “This deal ensures that the NHS will get the best possible value for taxpayers, and is good news for our staff and patients. This deal with Microsoft represents a saving of hundreds of millions of pounds.”
To add to this, Sarah Wilkinson, the CEO at NHS Digital explained: “This deal will allow the NHS to derive productivity and collaboration benefits from the use of numerous Microsoft products and will strengthen cyber security across the system.
I would also like to thank Microsoft for allowing NHS Digital to deploy numerous licences at no cost in recent months in response to the pandemic. They have been a superb partner throughout this crisis and we look forward to extending this partnership in the years ahead.”
Finally, the CEO of Microsoft UK; Cindy Rose, also commented: “Microsoft is proud to support the NHS any way we can, especially in these challenging times. Since COVID-19, the NHS has rapidly accelerated its adoption of digital tools to enable clinicians and support staff to perform their life-saving work more effectively.
This agreement ensures NHS organisations across England have access to modern productivity tools and solutions necessary to delivering better patient outcomes now and in the future.”