Welcome to BJSSinfo@bjss.com

BJSS Practices: Healthcare

NHS Spine 2 is the UK public sector’s largest Open Source-based system.

Technology is key to providing operational efficiency, improving patient care, and transforming the wider healthcare industry.

Public sector IT is undergoing a period of dramatic change. Responding to cost pressures, whilst reducing dependency on a small number of traditional suppliers, the Government is driving the adoption of Open Source software and focussing on more iterative and Agile delivery techniques. Via the G-Cloud procurement framework, BJSS is one of the largest providers of IT services to the UK Central Government and the NHS. We work extensively with public sector organisations and have deployed the BJSS Enterprise Agile risk-first, architecture-centric approach to ensure a successful transition to Agile development within these organisations more familiar with traditional Waterfall approaches.

Mike Buck

Head of Healthcare Practice

Prior to joining BJSS in 2010, I worked entirely in end user teams in the manufacturing, retail and utility sectors. I have managed most of the different functions of IT including service management, architecture and development. In 2007, I completed an MBA which has provided a great general understanding of the businesses I’ve worked in. It perhaps wasn’t the wisest of moves to start the course, move house, change jobs, get married and have 2 children whilst trying to focus on my study.
Mike Buck
Mike Buck
Head of Healthcare Practice

BJSS Thought Leadership: Healthcare

Has the UK Government leapfrogged the private sector to become the IT trend setter?

Since the credit crisis, one word has defined the UK public sector: Austerity. In its attempt to reduce the national deficit, the UK Government has cut spending across much of the public sector and directed departments to identify and eliminate areas of waste. This has been especially evident in the NHS, which has made great strides in changing its operational culture. Waste is being eradicated and efficiency improved. Information technology is an area that can make a significant contribution to such savings. The Health and Social Care Information Commission (HSCIC) (the public sector agency which provides infrastructure platforms and reporting on behalf of the NHS), is delivering Open Source replacements for several large mission-critical IT systems. This trend is apparent in other Government agencies too. The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), for example, has replaced its legacy Crisis Hub with an alternative based on Open Source, delivered using an Agile approach. This technical innovation has been driven by the Government’s support of Open Source solutions, Agile delivery and Cloud-based deployment, leading to cutting-edge and flexible technology platforms, which can be delivered quickly, at a fraction of the cost of commercial alternatives. If Agile is applied correctly – defining the architecture and tackling risk from the outset, and then testing the delivery at every stage of its journey – a “no surprises end game” is achievable. This approach empowers decision makers in the organisation to make the right decision at the right time during an IT project. Agile quite simply makes it possible to keep a project on track and ensure it meets objectives, whilst delivering value. Government departments are increasingly learning that time and money can be saved by combining this approach with Open Source software. Meanwhile, the private sector, traditionally the technological innovator, has found itself hindered by an estate of large legacy systems based on proprietary software. While the capital investment associated with rolling out proprietary platforms has prevented an exodus to Open Source until investments are amortised, critics have argued that Open Source lacks the reliability of commercial alternatives and contains security vulnerabilities, which expose businesses to significant and unnecessary risk. These risks are often over stated (usually by the vendors of proprietary solutions which have their own issues): the FCO’s Open-source, public Cloud-based system was successfully accredited to Government “Impact Level 2” status on its first attempt. Users of commercial systems are tied to the vendor’s development process, the view of the market, pricing structure and roadmap. Licensing structures can be unnecessary complex and support arrangements can be accompanied by hidden support charges. By its nature, proprietary lock-in hinders innovation. By encouraging the adoption of Open Source and Agile, the UK Government has been able to benefit from technologies that outperform their commercial alternatives while delivering dramatic cost-savings without compromising reliability or security. Once considered to be a follower, the UK Government is now very much the trendsetter. Government has leapfrogged the private sector.

BJSS Healthcare Successes

NHS Spine 2

With Spine 2, BJSS delivered the largest Open Source-based system in the UK public sector. Comprising over 20,000 individual primary and secondary care sites, pharmacies, opticians, dentists and education and training establishments. Today the system handles more than 400,000 unique user logons and about 250 million messages every month. Designed for zero data loss and 99.97% availability, it is highly resilient, has over 20,000 endpoints, and is used and supported 24 hours a day 365 days a year. The engagement combined Open Source Software with the BJSS Enterprise Agile delivery approach to achieve dramatic cost savings and efficiency improvements for the NHS. >>Read the Full Case Study

Re-Engineering HES

BJSS was contracted to migrate the legacy NHS Hospital Episodes Statistics (HES) system to a newer version and return it to in-house NHS control. HES stores a detailed record for each patient activity across every NHS hospital and contracted independent facility in England. Within six months,  BJSS had successfully delivered a completely re-written system that requires a substantially smaller hardware footprint and a rationalised, maintainable code base. BJSS worked closely with the in-house operations team to define operational procedures for the new system, including its day-to-day processes and monitoring, backup and recovery mechanisms and Disaster Recovery.

Personal Health Service

BJSS was contracted by a private healthcare provider to take on the Change and Service Delivery capability of its flagship consumer service. Accessible online and via mobile devices, the service combines expert knowledge of health and wellbeing with smart technology. Enabling patients to monitor their health and progress, the service considers all aspects of their health and tracks their progress in real time. BJSS took on the Senior Integration Partner role and worked with the client and its two other Integration Partners to deliver a new Target Operating Model and support the new delivery capability. BJSS also delivered a new Firewall solution for the service, kicked off the development of the next Feature release, and established capability for a new service desk.