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Tony Collins is an investigative and campaigning journalist and former Executive Editor at Computer Weekly. With his friend and colleague David Bicknell he wrote "Crash", which found common factors in the world's largest public and private sector IT-related failures. He wrote "Open Verdict", a book on the strange deaths of defence scientists. He writes, and gives talks, on the tensions and disputes between suppliers and users.

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Did DH deceive Public Accounts Committee on advance payments to CSC?

Tory MP questions whether Department of Health misled MPs

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The Department of Health has failed to disclose to the Public Accounts Committee an advance payment to CSC of £200m.

Tory MP Richard Bacon has written to the NHS Chief Executive Sir David Nicholson warning that a failure to disclose to the Committee is a "very serious matter".

Bacon, who is a long-standing member of the Committee, is concerned that the Department did not mention the advance payment at a hearing of the Committee on the NPfIT detailed care records systems on 23 May 2011; and the payment was not mentioned in the Department's subsequent memo to the committee. 

The Department is sensitive about advance payments to suppliers - successive health ministers and DH officials have claimed that suppliers are not paid until they deliver. Advance payments are made to suppliers such as CSC in advance of delivery. 

Bacon's letter in full is here.

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