COMMERCIAL: Five South West trusts have signed a multimillion-pound contract for a digital imaging system which will allow staff to view images taken in other hospitals.

The five acute trusts in the south west peninsula - Plymouth Hospitals Trust, Royal Devon and Exeter Foundation Trust, Northern Devon Healthcare Trust, South Devon Healthcare Foundation Trust and Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust - awarded the Picture Archiving and Communications Systems (PACS) contract to Insignia Medical Systems following a procurement process through the Official Journal of the European Union.

The system allows authorised staff to access and view images at any PACS workstation or computer, in any connected NHS location. The contract will come into effect from July 2013, providing an initial seven-year commitment, with extension options for up to 10 years.

Andy Blofield, director of Plymouth information communication technology shared service and consortium lead, said Insignia had been chosen from a shrotlist of nine suppliers.

He said: “The process required a significant commitment from clinical and non-clinical staff across all trusts, procurement support from the Peninsula Purchasing and Supply Alliance (PPSA) and the PACS system suppliers themselves.

“The success of this procurement is wholly due to the commitment of everyone involved and I would like to express my personal thanks.”