HC Deb 03 April 1996 vol 275 c328W
Mr. David Atkinson

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the problem of non-recognition by computers of the year 2000 with regard to his Department's computers and those for which it is responsible. [24407]

Mr. Horam

Preliminary analysis of the Department of Health's own mainframe computer systems has already been undertaken to assess the likely impact of the change of millennium. A further detailed analysis is to be carried out during 1996–97 to fully assess the impact of the change.

National health service systems users and suppliers have been alerted to the problem by a series of articles published over the last year in the British Journal of Healthcare Computing and Information Management by the information management centre. The IMC will later this month be deciding what further action is necessary.

The NHS central register is in the process of installing a new computer system as part of the new NHS number programme. The specification for the system includes provision for the year 2000.

This issue is common to many organisations and the Department will be collaborating with other government and non-governmental agencies to ensure that intelligence is shared.