Capita to take over NHS Choices

I see today that Capita has been named as the preferred bidder for the £60m+ contract to run the NHS Choices website for the next 3 years – ahead of the incumbent, the Dr Foster Intelligence public-private partnership, as well as IBM, Serco and TATA.
According to Capita’s own press release:

Capita will be responsible for the hosting, technical and content development of the NHS online presence and related digital services. A key focus will be on ensuring innovative engagement with citizens and clinicians to support a healthier nation.

As many as 70 companies expressed an interest when the procurement exercise kicked off late last year. The current contract is due to expire next month.
It’s clearly a big deal, and although I’ve done quite a bit of work lately for the Department of Health and NHS, I don’t know what the implications of a change would be. Anyone care to enlighten us all?

8 thoughts on “Capita to take over NHS Choices”

  1. I’ve been in touch with a few people connected to NHS Choices today, none of whom wanted to go on the record.
    I’m told the official line is: the show goes on as normal. The day-to-day stuff still needs doing, and the development roadmap goes well into next year. But with staff receiving formal TUPE notification today, it’s inevitable that minds should wander a bit.

  2. Wow , I met with some people from Dr Foster a few weeks ago and they were pretty certain they would continue so this must be a bit of a shock.

  3. Indeed James, it’s a conclusion I’ve reluctantly reached myself in the last couple of years. Unless, that is, government gets markedly better at building sites – and I wouldn’t entirely rule that out.
    But I fear it’ll shift the cultural question from one part of the organisation (the IT dept) to another. Statisticians don’t like the idea of other people doing nasty things – or in my experience, anything – with their datasets.

  4. I went to the wordcampuk at Birmingham this weekend
    I am new to blogging and web communites (HI everyone }
    I was nearly the oldest there , but not quite
    I am not a very clever chappie but i would guesstimate that some of the quys and girls that attended the weekend could undercut that £60 million by just smmidgillion or two
    Someone please let the smart people have a go now
    don,t let them keep doing yesterday all over again

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