Trusts use new marketplace to purchase goods and services

A new procurement platform that will transform the way the NHS buys its products and services is being used by NHS trust staff for the first time.

The Edge4Health, a cloud-based, consumer-style marketplace has been developed by NHS Shared Business Services (NHS SBS) and technology company Virtualstock to deliver cost savings and efficiencies, better data management, greater compliance and end-to-end supply chain visibility.

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust, Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust, Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust and Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust are the first organisations in the country to go live with The Edge4Health.

More than 1,000 NHS employees are now using the platform to buy thousands of goods and services every day – almost a million products ranging from syringes to pacemakers, laptops to imaging equipment. Whether direct from the supplier or through the NHS Supply Chain catalogue, requisitioners can select products and services via a familiar consumer-style experience.

In the last three months more than £8 million NHS spend has been transacted via The Edge4Health, which is now being rolled out widely across the NHS – starting with around 60 NHS trusts that currently use NHS SBS finance and procurement services.

David Morris, managing director at NHS Shared Business Services, said: “In the NHS, lives depend – quite literally – on having the right product, in the right place, at the right time. Yet until now, the systems to support this have been complex and difficult to use. With The Edge4Health, many of the benefits we’re used to as consumers will become available to the NHS for the first time. The intuitive and easy-to-use platform meets the demands of a modern, forward-thinking NHS and will eliminate many of the barriers that – until now – have prevented NHS hospitals from fully meeting Lord Carter’s efficiency targets.

“The meticulous work that has gone into building and refining a digital platform, which can benefit hundreds of individual NHS organisations, has delivered a robust solution that will transform NHS procurement for many years to come. The Edge4Health is now a standard part of the NHS SBS service, which we are rolling out at no additional cost to our NHS clients.”

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