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Stockport NHS Foundation Trust

CDW helps Stockport NHS Foundation Trust to deliver better patient care.


In response to increasing demand and evolving healthcare needs, Stockport NHS Foundation Trust needed to implement and leverage a better IT environment to improve patient care and the work/life balance of their staff and clinicians due to increased demand and evolving healthcare requirements.

CDW partnered with the Trust to deliver a comprehensive and innovative technology solution that would transform the way the Trust operates and delivers healthcare services.

The first step was to upgrade the Trust’s outdated and unreliable network infrastructure. CDW implemented a state-of-the-art wireless network solution that covers all clinical areas and supports agile working for clinicians.

With a robust and reliable infrastructure in place, the Trust was able to invest in new and emerging technologies that would further enhance patient outcomes and clinician efficiencies.

By modernising the infrastructure and making significant investments in mobile devices, clinicians and staff are now able to spend more time with patients, providing a higher standard of care and experiencing a better work/life balance. It’s also given the Trust better security, lower instances of human error, and a reduction in costs.

CDW and the Stockport NHS Foundation Trust has developed a strong relationship over several years. CDW’s ongoing support gives the Trust access to trusted technology partners and allows them to make stronger business cases for investment in the future.

About Stockport NHS Foundation Trust

The Stockport NHS Foundation Trust, a medium-sized acute trust, serves patients across the Stockport area of Greater Manchester and the High Peaks across 10 community locations. Stepping Hill Hospital is the main acute hospital in the Stockport area.

The hospital has around 6,300 staff and provides care to over 300,000 annually. With a commitment to improving patient care and staff well-being, the Trust collaborated with CDW to revolutionise its IT infrastructure.

"The NHS has seen a massive upturn in the number of patients attending and we need to make sure we can treat people effectively. The leveraging of every piece of technology we can is essential for that." - Peter Hughes – Chief Technology Officer at Stockport NHS Foundation Trust.


Stockport NHS Foundation Trust has been impacted by a number of political, socioeconomic, and financial factors, including Covid-19, resulting in an increase in demand. Stepping Hill Hospital, the main acute hospital for the Stockport area, currently sees around 300,000 patients but that number is increasing year on year. It needed solutions that could give staff and clinicians more time to spend with patients, to deliver a higher standard of care and provide a better work/life balance for staff.

Outdated manual processes, reliance on paper records, and slow adaptability compounded the issues, necessitating a comprehensive IT transformation. First, the infrastructure had to be updated. The infrastructure needed to be able to support not just new technology introduced during this process but be able to support the evolving needs of the Trust.

"A vast majority of devices purchased over the last five years have been done through CDW. They have consistently been the best value and we get a lot of added expertise as well." – Peter Hughes – Chief Technology Officer at Stockport NHS Foundation Trust.


First, CDW and the Trust wanted to build a robust underlying network that could accommodate future solutions. To achieve this, CDW implemented a state-of-the-art Cisco wireless network that covers all clinical areas and supports agile working for clinicians.

With the foundational framework now in place, CDW collaborated with emerging technology partners to implement a range of bespoke solutions that would further enhance patient outcomes and clinician efficiencies. RTLS (Real Time Location Services) was implemented, equipping devices such as infusion pumps and defibrillators with trackers that precisely identify their location on-site, ensuring tracking within half a metre.

Communication badges replaced the old bleep system. The system uses the wireless network for quick, robust communication on the go, giving clinicians the ability to instant message each other while on the move.

An investment in mobile devices was made for the wards. The old paper system for records was outdated and not only very time-consuming but open to human error. Electronic mobile devices were brought in to replace this.

The mobile devices leverage an Imprivata Enterprise Access Management and VDI solution that offers seamless sharing of devices through a secure tap-in and tap-out system, enabling clinicians to access patient information immediately, and allowing them to input information, so the patient records are immediately updated and available for other members of staff to access.

The introduction of an automated LEAP system allows urgent information to be quickly input into a handheld tablet to create an escalation pathway to the correct team on call.

CDW implemented Zebra mobile devices to support a blood traceability system which provides end-to-end traceability of blood bag units with handheld digital scanners, improving efficiency and reducing human errors. CDW continues to provide Microsoft licencing, ensuring seamless server and Office 365 operations.


The investment in the infrastructure has created a strong foundation for the implementation of further solutions to support evolution, growth, and strategy. The new Cisco wireless network offers better speed and coverage for devices with seamless access to all data across all clinical areas. The infrastructure is now more robust, secure, and stable, and ensures when future clinical systems are implemented, they’re protecting, enabling, and optimising the clinical pathways.

Purchasing a range of clinical devices now means clinical care is supported and improved for the bedside. Better communication through the new system leads to better patient care with simpler, instant communication between clinical staff. The automated LEAP system also immediately alerts staff to an issue that requires review, so a medical decision can be made quickly.

The Imprivata Enterprise Access Management and VDI solution provides several positive outcomes. First, the ability to tap-in and out significantly reduces the time taken to log-in over the previous system – several minutes have now been reduced to a matter of seconds. It also immediately brings up the session the user was previously working on, reducing the time required to pick up from where they left off on their last log-in. Clinicians don’t need to wait for the information they require to reach them through a long, drawn-out process – up-to-date patient information is immediately available when input, so clinical staff can make a quick decision for the patient, improving patient care.

The tap-in and tap-out system also means devices can be shared much more easily. Instead of having individual devices for each clinician and member of staff, a smaller amount of devices can be shared, reducing the cost of investment required. This has also led to stronger security. The tap-in and tap-out feature means potential risk of devices being left accidentally logged in are eliminated, maintaining the security of sensitive data.

The RTLS asset tracking system ensures the right technology is in the right place at the right time. It also allows the Trust to respond more quickly to issues and malfunctions with specific devices. Issues can be logged immediately so devices can be switched out and repaired without affecting the area in which they’re required. Further benefits also include helping with the cleaning of equipment and stopping thefts, which lower costs and improve patient treatment.

Additionally, the Zebra mobile devices which support the blood traceability system improve efficiency and reduce potential human errors.

The project was always led from a patient and clinician focus. This resulted in all the solutions deployed by CDW being tested in partnership with the clinical teams, ensuring they were being implemented in the correct areas and that maximum functionality was being achieved. By reducing tasks, making better use of the time of staff and clinicians, and creating more time to be spent with patients, the solutions have achieved a better experience for patients, a higher level of care, and a better work/life balance for the staff and clinicians.

The relationship between the Stockport NHS Foundation Trust and CDW has grown organically. Not only have most of the devices purchased by the Trust in the last five years been through CDW, but CDW has also provided invaluable support. Our contracts have helped the Trust make better business cases for future investment, and we have also helped them get in contact with the right vendors.

I can’t think of a time where I’ve gone to CDW needing help with something and they can’t offer it. They have a vast wealth of experience with the people who work for them.

Peter Hughes

Head of IT at Stockport NHS Foundation Trust