The former chairman of an IT firm involved in a major NHS project has denied conspiring to make misleading statements about the company’s financial position.

Former iSoft Group chairman Patrick Cryne, 58, of Glossop, Derbyshire, and three other former directors pleaded not guilty to conspiring to make misleading statements to the stock market about the company.

All four were granted bail and ordered to appear at Southwark Crown Court in central London again on 16 September.

The Financial Services Authority alleges the men misled the stock market and external auditors about the firm’s financial position.

Cryne is accused of conspiring with the three others to say a contract with the Irish Hospital Information Systems had been signed and funded before 30 April 2005.

Cryne; former chief executive Timothy Whiston, 42, of Lymm, Cheshire; and former directors Stephen Graham, 46, from Knutsford, Cheshire; and John Whelan, 43, of Cheadle Hulme, Stockport, all denied the charge.

iSoft, which was involved in the NHS software programme known as the National Programme for IT, has since been sold to Australian software firm IBA Health, which renamed itself iSoft after the takeover in October 2007.