Worcestershire’s 3ML Pathfinder tender “a step in the right direction” (UK)

eHealthInsider’s Lis Evenstad casts a jaundiced eye over the prospects for the 3ML target of 100,000 new users this year in an item Pathfinders losing their way. There is a strong signal in the item that the Pathfinder sites will now be regarded as being on target if they just get contracts in place. Given the reaction on Telecare Aware to the Worcestershire tender documents we hope that the quote from Chris Wright, the Department of Health’s programme manager for 3millionlives, that the Worcestershire tender for a managed service was “a step in the right direction” is just the official line and not what he really believes.

Oh, hang on, “a step in the right direction” can mean almost anything from ‘It’s really good’ to ‘It was a mess but it’s a start’. Yes, it’s a good phrase for an official line! As 2013 moves on it feels like the 3ML ground is getting softer and softer. Let’s hope it does not turn into quicksand. Ed Steve.

Categories: Latest News.


  1. Cathy

    Neil Armstrong told us he had taken a small step but it was a giant leap for mankind … 3ML is aiming for the giant leap territory but will Pathfinder steps be big enough even if their feet are pointing the right way?

    Since I could not readily access all the oodles of data the NHS collates, I settled for basing this on the 2011 census populations, by Local Authority. From which a rough approximation of the pathfinder populations can be worked out and, based on *50% of the population having one LTC or more, the total pathfinder population playing guinea pig is around 12% of the population of England with one LTC or more.

    Yet the Pathfinder 100,000 is just 3.3% of the 3ML and if the pathfinders achieved that within 2013 one could possibly argue that they would increase that four times over the 3ML lifetime goal of 2017 … but already Worcestershire has given us the heads up that they expect to reach their share of Pathfinder by 2017 … and what of the non-pathfinder authorities – are we really believing that they can start later and deliver higher and faster scaling than the pathfinders?

    They will still have to go through a procurement exercise – the timescale of that will not change if it is done properly and unless all the tenders are won by the same providers with the same 2013 standard equipment, there is still going to be an initial phase and then scaling up; the staff still have to be trained, the public educated …

    I am perplexed; it seems to me we are all dancing in the dark and just hoping we put our best foot forward each time we take a small step and that we are going in sort of approximately the right direction and some of us might just land on the moon?

    … with me slow, slow, quick ,quick, slow … rather like one of those Saturday evening ‘celebrity talent’ entertainment shows that I am told are very popular!

    [i]* Taken from graphic on page 9 3rd edition of the DH LTC Compendium of Information (May 2012)[/i]