Companies are vying with each other to offer eprocurement solutions to the NHS, ahead of the publication of a national e-procurement strategy.

A survey by e-Net Software recently found that only 11 per cent of hospitals are currently using e-procurement for goods and services, but 58 per cent expect to in the future. Theoretically, eprocurement should deliver savings by eliminating paperwork and improve 'just-intime'delivery.

Medipurchase has just launched a website, www. medipurchase. com, following a pilot project involving one NHS trust and one private hospital. A catalogue of 20,000 items is available online. Medipurchase hopes the site will be used by more than 20 trusts in its first year.

Crown Agents Purchasing Services and Syntegra have launched a national epurchasing service for the NHS. EROSnet is based on CAPS'EROS e-purchasing software, in use in 40 trusts. Access to the system is through NHSnet.

www. capsonline. co. uk Smartmission, a web-based hospital e-procurement company, has formally launched in the UK after reaching agreement with a number of trusts to implement its e-procurement and tendering system on a pilot basis. The company already works with 100 hospitals in Europe. www. smartmission. com Medexonline has awarded a contract to KPMG Consulting to build an emarketplace and application service provider platform for a European emarketplace. This will add catalogues, tendering, auctioning and order processing to the services already offered at www. medexonline. com