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Is the government about to scrap the NHS record scheme?

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling, has today thrown into doubt the largest civilian IT project in the world with a suggestion that the £12.7 billion NHS IT programme may be scrapped. He was quoted as saying the project was "something that I think we don't need to go ahead with just now" with the government looking to save £600 million in the medium term by cutting back on various projects. So what is going on?

As soon as the comment was made on the Andrew Marr show it was "corrected" by government officials suggesting significant savings would be made but the scheme would still go ahead. The government has invested billions upon billions of pounds into the project, which is already years behind schedule, and this would be yet another massive U-turn if it was scrapped.

This is just the latest in a number of potential cost saving initiatives to be implemented by the UK government in the short to medium term. There is a need to save billions upon billions of pounds in the short to medium term to reduce the ever growing budget deficit and at least attempt to put UK plc finances in some kind of order.

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