Oxford health trust to save more than £1m with cloud-based telephony
Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust has said it is aiming to save more than £1 million over five years by replacing its four existing phone systems with a cloud-based service from Vodafone. The new system will cover up to 140 sites in Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Wiltshire and Somerset, the trust says. By moving to the Vodafone hosted telephony service based on off-site technology, Oxford Health will also simplify arrangements for staff and service users, allowing it to redirect ICT resources to patient care, it says. The Vodafone hosted telephony service will enable the trust to scale flexibly so that phone lines can be increased according to demand. "We were looking for a more flexible set-up that would support changes to our working practices and be responsive to changing business needs over time," said Dominic McKenny, Director of Informatics at Oxford Health. "We also wanted to ensure that we don't miss patient calls. For example, even if a patient rings the wrong Trust number, the new system will allow their calls to be forwarded to the correct service quickly and easily. This is particularly critical within a mental health setting, when callers may be in distress and need to speak to a clinician urgently."
Pictured: A nurse at Oxford Health talks to a colleague on the phone
Vodafone UK Business, Corporate and Public Sector: www.vodafone.co.uk/business/
Northgate helps Department of Transport launch HGV road user levy
Northgate Public Services has launched the HGV road user levy with the Department for Transport. The levy is a new, time-based charge that must be paid by all heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) of 12 tonnes or more. It applies to UK and foreign registered HGVs, using UK roads from 1 April 2014. Northgate has responsibility for the design and operation of the payment system and associated database that operators and drivers of non-UK registered HGVs will use to purchase the levy before the vehicle enters the UK. An estimated 130,000 individual foreign HGVs enter the UK each year making a total of 1.5 million trips. The payment varies according to the weight of the HGV, axle configuration and vehicle type. The contract to deliver the Foreign Operator Payment System (FOPS) was awarded to Northgate by the department in September 2013. Foreign operators can pay daily, weekly, monthly or annually depending on their operational requirements, with discounts available for longer levy periods. FOPS is available in six major European languages. Registered account transactions are undertaken entirely online, and the FOPS includes a database of foreign HGVs that have paid the levy. This will provide the ability for drivers to check the levy status of their vehicle through a public register. This can be accessed via a free web portal, or through a 'text to check' service using a cloud based infrastructure. The database will also enable authorities to identify and take action against HGVs which have not paid, or potentially underpaid the levy.
HGV road user levy: www.gov.uk/government/collections/hgv-road-user-levy