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GP's computer still snarled in red tape

Dr Ravinder Sahota's practice still has not received its first computer system because NHS red tape has delayed the order for more than a year. He now has less than a month to install the system before the new contract starts.

The practice in Wickford, Essex, decided in December 2002 that, with more than 10 manual registers on the go, it had to become computerised.

After an initial dispute with his PCT over which system he could have, Dr Sahota has now been told by the strategic health authority that the order must go through its IT department. 'It's been like a scene from Yes Minister,' he said. 'We won't be able to function under the new contract without a computer.'

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