NHS Scotland has signed a “landmark agreement” with Microsoft that will see its entire estate moved onto Windows 10 over the next three years.
Microsoft Office 365 software will also be deployed across NHS Scotland, meaning all 161,000 employees across the country’s health and care system will have access to the same platform.
NHS Scotland said the agreement would help facilitate “a truly joined up NHS” with greater collaboration across health and social care services, by enabling “all staff, from GPs to consultants to support workers, to communicate more effectively across a single digital platform”.
Medical and triage times are expected to fall as a result of the agreement, through which NHS Scotland said it anticipated “significant improvements in patient care and patient outcomes”.
NHS Scotland will be moved to Windows 10 E5, the latest version of Microsoft’s enterprise-focused software platform, which features stronger security and device management capabilities.
Jeane Freeman, Scotland’s cabinet secretary for health and sport, said Scotland was “creating the environment and the tools for to allow staff and services to flourish”, an objective it has set out to deliver through the country’s National Digital Platform project, which aims to establish common standards across healthcare systems in Scotland.
Freeman suggested NHS Scotland’s migration to Office 365 was “a key building block” in this process.
“At the moment they are too often hampered by systems that don’t join up or make collaboration easy,” said Freeman.
“We are building a properly joined-up health and social care system, which is much more focussed on getting the right information to the right people at the right time, whether it’s a care professional or an individual managing their own health.
“By consolidating hundreds of separate systems across Scotland’s NHS and care services, we can ensure that our hard-working staff are able to focus more on patients than processes. And at the same time, we have a duty to protect people’s information safely and securely. As part of that, moving to Office 365 is going to make our systems more resilient.”
The £80m contract covers a period of three years, with the option to extend for a further two.
Earlier this year, the Department for Health and Social Care announced an agreement with Microsoft that will see NHS devices upgraded to Windows 10 in an effort to improve make them more secure against cyber-attacks.
Cindy Rose, CEO of Microsoft UK, added: “NHS Scotland staff do incredible work each and every day, however cross-department collaboration can be challenging due to the use of multiple systems. By moving to one common platform in Office 365, staff will have the best tools available to work together seamlessly, ensuring they’re able to focus on what counts most – helping patients.”
“By Windows 10 E5, NHS Scotland can be confident that its systems are running on the most up-to-date software at all times. As a result, the organisation will have a real-time view of any potential cyber threats and can therefore minimise the impact of any cyber-attack across the entire organisation.”
NHS Scotland announced the news during the second day of Microsoft’s Future Decoded event in London, where Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, waxed lyrical about the potential of artificial intelligence in UK healthcare.
5 November 2018 @ 14:31
I’ve never seen so many badly formed comments. This piece of news got nerds frothing at the mouth with anger. BUT LINUX!!!
3 November 2018 @ 09:48
I use Linux for all my business and personal work.
My entire business model is built on FOSS.
However, as an IT expert of 35 years, I recognise that the unified communication and collaboration tools, enterprise management and support Windows E5 and Office 365 offer have no strong equivalent in the FOSS world.
Office 365 and Windows 10 E5 are not “just Windows with Word and Excel” that you can replace with Ubuntu and Libre/Open Office.
That is a simplistic view.
3 November 2018 @ 09:39
Way too many systems that are in use that are still only compatible with Windows XP. Add to that vendor applications that are still not working on 64 bit clients of any flavour of Windows and the vendors describing bugfix patches as new releases and wanting mid 5-figure sums to “upgrade” (when it is clearly a bugfix) and this is likely to bankrupt several boards.
Good to be in NHS IT at this time though.
3 November 2018 @ 08:58
Some manager making the usual uninformed decision. Other organisations found it was much better to go with Linux and open office, if anything Microsoft is still playing catch up with the rest of the world. If they would like to actually improve their business processes then they should contact me.
2 November 2018 @ 21:25
Too much clinical software developed on a Windows platform without any inbuilt compatibility with other operating systems. Windows only current option. It’s very naive to believe non clinical software is going to affect patient waiting times etc.
2 November 2018 @ 21:25
I think that spending all that money on W10PRO Linux Ubuntu is very Good or 1 of them.is easy to use and not so bugged as Windows 10. All that people’s Money. my God why nobody is saying something about it it’s time we all do.
And also there are people that need Work.. not just all for
Microsoft & Windows £€$ that money can go to jobs there are plenty of people that do not have the training in it but are good and some good recruiting of IT engineers half and half. Show the cost would not be so high as $£Microsoft.
I can't believe it
2 November 2018 @ 14:31
Are they ok? Windows 10 is plenty of its and every patch makes the things worst.
I can't believe it
2 November 2018 @ 14:39
Plenty of problems
2 November 2018 @ 14:30
I’m pretty sure that even thinking about NHSbuntu / NHoS was prohibited by The Powers That Be. I definitely won’t mention NHoS (previously NHSbuntu).
A new name maybe? “I Buy Me New Hat operating System” could work…
I can't believe it
2 November 2018 @ 14:35
Pity, Ubuntu is easy to use and not so bugged as Windows 10.