NHS spends £8m on one-month extensions for major Microsoft deals
Health service puts in place short-term arrangements with incumbent reseller suppliers
The NHS has spent more than £8m on extending by one month two major national contracts for the provision of core Microsoft products.
Two large contracts with Microsoft resellers were due to come to conclude at the end of April: a £163m five-year deal with Bytes for the delivery and support of about one million Windows 10 licences; and a £52m agreement signed with Insight in 2020, which covers Microsoft 365 systems.
To bridge the gap until long-term replacement agreements are signed, the NHS has extended both contracts by one month. The two deals will now expire at the end of this month.
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An extra £3.5m will be spent on the Insight contract for Microsoft 365 tools, while Bytes will receive an extra £4.6m for delivering Windows products throughout the month of May, according to newly published procurement documents.
This equates to an additional £8.1m, taking the cumulative lifetime worth of the two contracts to £223m.
When the Windows 10 deal was first announced in 2018, the NHS claimed that it would provide “local organisations [with] better cyber security protection” via the integration of Microsoft security tools.
Two years later, the agreement for 1.2 million Microsoft 365 licences would “a truly joined-up NHS”, the health service said at the time.
“Staff will be able to communicate more effectively and will have access to the information, applications and services they need, reducing the administrative burden on staff and improving patient safety,” the NHS added.
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