Over 200 sites in Lincolnshire, including hospitals and GP practices, are now using the latest Microsoft Windows technology following a successful 12-month upgrade programme managed by NHS Arden & GEM CSU.
On behalf of Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (LPFT) and Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust (LCHS), Arden & GEM has moved over 4,000 Trust devices onto the Windows 10 operating system, by upgrading existing devices and procuring new equipment. In addition, over 3,000 devices across 86 GP practices and NHS Lincolnshire CCG have been upgraded or replaced.
In total, over 7,400 devices (existing and new) have been upgraded and deployed across Lincolnshire as part of the upgrade programme.
The challenging schedule of work was completed before Microsoft withdrew support for Windows 7, the system previously being used, despite COVID-19 disrupting the final stages. After a necessary halt during the national lockdown, new measures were put in place to allow the upgrades to complete, with ‘drop-in’ sessions replaced with booked slots involving minimal contact between staff.
Innovative methods were also used to complete the GP rollout, which avoided disrupting clinical sessions and minimised the need for CSU staff on site. Engineers built new devices offsite, before visiting a practice to replace existing devices – recycling, rebuilding and destroying equipment as appropriate. Site visits or video calls with each practice were used to fully understand their requirements and ensure a seamless migration.
Ian Baldam, Deputy Director of Informatics at LPFT, said: “This has been a huge project that could not have been achieved without the support of all of our staff, both clinical and non-clinical. Arden & GEM has supported us well during our Windows 10 project and has produced project plans based on our needs and true collaboration. There were regular touchpoints throughout the project which provided the means to discuss and escalate issues. The CSU has also stepped in to support us with legacy systems and provided a very responsive service.”
Nigel Cullumbine, IT Executive Director at Arden & GEM, said: “This was a complex programme that needed to be delivered quickly and efficiently for our customers, with minimal impact on users. Understanding the exact requirements and dependencies for different groups, and using robust systems to book and manage migrations, helped ensure the transition was smooth and timely, despite the additional challenges during lockdown.”
The programme was successfully completed within budget and within the revised timescales dictated by the coronavirus pandemic. You can find out more about the project in this case study.