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Published on 11 January 2008

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Equipment deal sets European record


A �140m, 19-year managed equipment service agreement between a major UK hospital trust and a service provider is claimed to be the largest standalone MES contract in Europe to date.

Under the terms of the agreement, over the contract’s lifetime the UK-based company Asteral will install, commission, maintain and manage pharmacy and diagnostic imaging equipment across University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust (UHL) sites.

One of England’s largest teaching trusts, UHL includes three hospitals and serves some two million people locally.

Asteral will also provide project management, training and related support services across each site.

An “uptime” guarantee aims at improving availability of equipment, which along with faster and more accurate equipment, should speed patient throughput and cut waiting times.

The MES also provides a guaranteed rolling replacement programme: each equipment type has a pre-agreed life-cycle, so the trust’s equipment should keep up with technological developments and not be used beyond recommended replacement dates.

Coverage includes three robotic pharmacies as well as diagnostic radiology services.

Helen Seth, UHL’s deputy director of operations, stated: “This is an innovative approach to the procurement, management and replacement of over 210 items of clinical equipment that will deliver real benefits to the patients served.”

Asteral business development director Stephen Hodgson commented: “This agreement is the culmination of 2.5 years’ planning and a close working partnership.”

University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust

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