Matt O’Donovan, CEO of WiFi SPARK, discusses his views on NHS procurement in this Open Access Government article
Procurement in the public sector has been a long debated and controversial subject. Right across the sector, there has been an oligopoly of huge organisations dominating the market, dictating terms and generally having a free run.
This has to a large extent meant that smaller, more innovative firms have been denied access, which in turn means the public sector and the taxpayer missing out on more efficient and cost-effective solutions.
The NHS is certainly no exception in this. Contract length for some non-medical technology, for example, has been up to 30 years in length. These contracts are also covered in so many clauses for automatic extensions and ‘fines’ for Trusts that are deemed by these organisations to go against the nature of the agreement, or just the fact that the vendor simply hasn’t made its money, that they can run even longer and cost even more, in some cases with legal action being threatened.
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Source: Open Access Government