On the 25 January 2022, the National Covid-Testing Cell wrote to Pathology Incident Managers and laboratories across England informing them that funding was to be made available for Trusts using point of care devices. The funding is to fund interface software to middleware and/or middleware itself to aide connectivity to electronic patient record.
Trusts are required to complete a business case which must contain the details and benefits that are expected to be achieved by implementing a solution funded by this opportunity.
The business case requirements include the number of rapid/POC testing devices requiring interoperability funding as part of this business case and Devices must be in use or for use for COVID19 testing. Interoperability must deliver measurable service delivery benefits.
A capital cost breakdown and quote should also be included.
A summary providing a high-level description of how the funding will be used to improve or benefit service delivery and any potential revenue cost impact needs to be given as well as an indication of when the Trust will expect to realise the benefits.
The benefits expected as an example are;
Automated transfer of test results to LIMS will enabling improved data reporting by reducing dependency on manual data entry.
Sitrep data for POC/rapid testing will be more consistently reported to national teams by the deadlines.
Additional rapid testing capacity will be enabled.
This will be reflected in national capacity sitreps for rapid/POC testing.
Multidisciplinary clinicians supporting patient pathways from ED will be able to access COVID19 test results in real time supporting clinical decision making.
This will support improving ED TATs by facilitating the prompt transfer of patients to suitable ward.
Trusts requiring middleware are expected to also describe the requirement, details of the cost and a description of the impact of not having middleware.
The Trusts are expected to include their Regional Pathology Lead and to ensure that bids are captured on Digital maturity strategies.
Maturity Strategies are the methodology being applied by NHS England to ensure that capital funding and consumable tied in expenditure is managed appropriately across the NHS and to ensure that suppliers and innovative technologies are considered more closely than before. Further details of these will be covered during the next Procurement Working Party Meeting on March 10 at 10.30. Please register your attendance on Eventbrite.
Suppliers of these types of Digital services, may find it beneficial to understand these requirements and where appropriate may in in a position to support their customers, or potential customers with robust information to inform and complete their business cases.
The deadline for Trusts to submit their funding applications in Monday 14 February 2022.