NHS IT project may collapse before general elections

The Labour government's £12.7 billion NHS National Programme for IT is on the brink of collapse just before the general elections.

The potential collapse of the project has been mounting pressure on Morecambe Bay, which is meant to be the first place to pilot Lorenzo patent management system.

However, Morecambe Bay NHS Trust CEO Tony Halsall said, “Throughout the entire project, patient safety has always been our top priority and we have developed a rigorous testing regime as part of the project.”

The project suffered big jolts many a times. Four former directors of iSOFT plc have been charged with offences by the Financial Services Authority. iSOFT plc was acquired by Sydney-based IBA Health in October 2007 and has since changed its name to iSOFT Group and remains a key supplier to the NHS under the National Programme for IT. Earlier, the Government had to bail out iSoft with millions of pounds.

The project has already been delayed for the past four years. March 2010 had been set as the deadline for the installation of the software.

The Department of Health had said that it could opt for some other plan to induce IT into the UK's health care system in case Lorenzo patent management system fails.

The failure of the project could lead to billions of pounds in legal claims.