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Artificial Limbs – Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why is the process changing?

The process is changing to allow greater transparency into equipment provided which will begin to address some of the current inequities in provision highlighted by patients. It will also allow commissioners to understand the range of equipment provided and will support the development of a prosthetic currency and tariff.

2. Will all products be available to trusts?

Yes – all product information provided at tender will be available on the NHS Supply Chain online catalogue. Any new or additional products can be added throughout the duration of the framework from awarded suppliers.

3. Which products are included?

All products that make up the final prosthesis and accessories (liners). Products required for the maintenance and repair of prosthesis are not included on the framework i.e. resins, machinery, casting etc.

4. Will this impact on lead times of products?

No, the NHS Supply Chain eDirect route is a transaction process only. The orders will be sent to the supplier almost instantaneously.

5. I do not have access to the NHS Supply Chain catalogue, how do I register?

In house centres can contact however it is now understood that all in house centres have been contacted by NHS Supply Chain. If your prosthetic centre is a managed service, all the service providers have been contacted and are working directly with NHS Supply Chain.

6. How do we order via NHS Supply Chain?

Training and guides to be provided by the Category Tower Service Provider where required.

7. Will new products be available via this route?

Yes, we will add all new products when they become available.

8. If we require products that are not commissioned what is the process?

An exceptions process is being developed for certain circumstances e.g. Veterans.

9. How will this work with Microprocessor Knees (MPKs)?

The requirement for pre-approval will still remain. Once the approval reference number is obtained this will be required to process the order via NHS Supply Chain.

10. How will we process returns or warranty agreements?

NHS Supply Chain has a dedicated Customer Service team who will process these requests. Each centre will be supplied with a ways of working document prior to the start of the new framework.

11. Will I be able to control what I see on the catalogue and what can be ordered?

There is an option on the NHS Supply Chain catalogue to mask products that as a trust you do not wish to be ordered, only the trust administrator can action this.