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NHS Supply Chain welcomes launch of new eProcurement Strategy

Thursday 8 May 2014

NHS Supply Chain welcomes the launch of the Department of Health’s new eProcurement Strategy. 

The new strategy complements the recently launched Procurement Strategy, and is designed to support trusts in improving NHS procurement activity and delivering cost efficiencies through the increased use of technology.

“We’re delighted that the Department of Health has taken this step to improve access to eProcurement through the launch of this new strategy” explains David Rabjohns, eCommerce Enterprise Architect at NHS Supply Chain. “As a business, we greatly support the introduction of a new ‘common standards’ based approach to data processing for the NHS.  This strategy will allow transparency throughout the NHS procurement process, simplifying the supply chain, driving cost efficiencies, increasing accuracy and allowing greater compliance.  It will also enable a more unified system of procurement across the NHS, enabling product comparison, aggregation and standardisation across trusts.” 

NHS Supply Chain has already begun its journey on this standards-based approach to data through achieving GS1 accreditation, collecting and displaying GS1 Global Trade Item Numbers (GTINs) to improve accessibility to product information, and increasing the use of e-solutions, such as electronic invoicing, to simplify the procurement process. 

“We also welcome reference made in the eProcurement Strategy to eDC and eDC Gold – systems which are already delivering benefits to a large number of NHS trusts” continues David.  “For example, Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust found that data transparency across orthopaedic procurement improved through the use of eDC Gold, reducing clinical time spent on stock management by 74 per cent and product recall processes by 92 per cent.  eProcurement is the way forward for the NHS in terms of delivering better value for money in procurement.”


Media enquiries:

Jayesha Mistry
07738 071 826

Jennie Brice-Boutard
07714 043 391

Joanna Morrison
07776 457 201

Notes to editors

About NHS Supply Chain

Follow us on Twitter: @NHSSupplyChain

NHS Supply Chain is operated by DHL as Agent of the NHS Business Services Authority. It supports the National Health Service (NHS) and other healthcare organisations in England and Wales by providing end to end supply chain solutions.

The organisation was formed in 2006 from the NHS Logistics Authority and parts of the NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency (NHS PASA). NHS Supply Chain aims to provide over £1 billion of savings to the NHS by 2016.

NHS Supply Chain manages the sourcing, delivery and supply of healthcare products and food for over 1,000 NHS trusts and healthcare organisations. It provides a single point of access to over 600,000 products ranging from bandages to sutures, from gloves to implants, and even diagnostic equipment such as MRI scanners.

Its management of the procurement process negates an NHS organisation’s need to tender through the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU). Costs can also be reduced through its one-route solution that consolidates all products onto one invoice and delivery – this saves up to £1* per product in back office administration costs and removes up to 40 deliveries going into a trust compared with ordering goods separately. (*source: NHS Supply Chain 2009 value proposition study with Southampton NHS trust)

To ensure that its products are fit for today’s healthcare market, NHS Supply Chain works with suppliers of all sizes to ensure its range embraces high quality and innovative products; and engages with clinicians, the Department of Health and academic institutions to make sure that it is aware of the current requirements and latest developments in clinical practice.

NHS Supply Chain’s product areas include:

  • Theatres
  • Dental
  • Audiology
  • Catering, including food
  • Infection control
  • Orthopaedics
  • Rehabilitation
  • Capital equipment, including finance and maintenance.

Based in Alfreton, Derbyshire, UK, the business employs around 2,400 staff in ten locations.

Delivering value to the NHS