Two Southern Cerner live sites have gone out to tender to replace their patient administration and electronic patient record systems provided under NPfIT.

North Bristol NHS Trust has released a tender for a ten-year contract for an EPR which must include a PAS, A&E, theatres and clinical documentation functionality with a single solution from a single supplier.

“The trust is looking for a strategic partner whose chosen solution must be adaptable or extendable to meet the future needs of the trust in building towards an electronic patient record,” the document says.

“The trust therefore reserves the option to utilise additional existing and future functionality provided by the chosen supplier.”

Royal United Hospital Bath NHS Trust has also issued a tender for a patient administration system, which says the procurement will be open to other southern NHS trusts.

Both trusts were ‘greenfield’ sites in the South that received Cerner Millennium from BT as part of NPfIT. The third was Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust.

Millennium is installed and live at six other Southern trusts. All must have a replacement system in place before the national contracts expire in October 2015.

Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust was the first of the nine to go out to tender last month.

Senior representatives of the organisations meet regularly as part of a Cerner live site group. NHS South East Coast chief information officer Tad Matus told EHI last month that the southern trusts had formed three groups to work on their plans for post-NPfIT contracts.

Two groups would procure collaboratively, while the third was made up of trusts that were likely to procure individually.

A North Bristol spokesperson said the trust considered doing a joint procurement with other trusts in the South West and had a couple of meetings early this year to explore the idea.

“Whilst there were potential benefits from a joint procurement, because we all have potential different future organisational plans it was felt we could manage any such changes better as individual trust procurements and/or targeted collaboratives rather than in a broader collaborative,” the spokesperson said.

North Bristol had high-profile difficulties implementing its EPR following go-live in December 2011.

It commissioned an independent review of the process, which concluded that it went live with Millennium before the outpatient or theatre builds were complete, sparking a “crisis” that took five months and £4.6m to resolve.

The trust spokesperson said North Bristol was going into the procurement with a “very open mind” and encouraging a range of suppliers to respond.

The trust expects to select a new supplier by the end of 2013 and to transfer to new system in mid-2015. It hoped a new contract would achieve flexibility, better integration and further improve supplier management.

Royal United Hospital Bath’s tender is for a five-year contract with an option to extend for a further two years, and is for a PAS only.

The tender document says the procurement will be open to other NHS organisations in the South to participate “as appropriate”.

A RUH spokesperson said the trust was, "exploring new options and new possibilities for provision of our Patient Administration System from 2015".

"This is a very early stage in that process but we look forward to receiving tenders from interested and appropriate organisations in the weeks to come."