Two UK hospitals are going high tech — as only UK hospitals can, with a bold, inflexible, expensive initiative that may hamstring the hospitals for decades to come:
Barts Hospital and The Royal London Hospital have awarded Siemens a 35-year contract to supply the latest medical technology in a deal worth more than £300 million.
Siemens will supply state-of-the-art diagnostic and treatment technology in the radiology, cardiology and oncology departments of the two hospitals. Siemens will begin installing equipment in late 2009 and will be responsible for ensuring the hospitals have the latest technology until 2045.
Look, we’ve seen American hospitals waste money in strange and spectacular ways, and we don’t know the details of this long-range British plan (maybe it’s not front-loaded in Siemens’ favor, and maybe they’ll stay responsive to the hospitals’ needs even though the hospitals have no alternative anymore).
But it just seems reckless to assume Seimens will still be making quality medical products in 2045, especially given the changes in medical technology over the past 35 years…
We’ve never heard anyone say “Boy, I’m glad we locked in that electronic-medical-record contract with IBM back in 1971” or, “We’ll proudly be implanting Guidant pacemakers well into the 2040s.”
More from Siemens…