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KPMG helps save BHB $30m in costs

The King Edward VII Memorial Hospital (File photograph)

An efficiency drive at the Bermuda Hospitals Board saved almost $30 million in less than three years, a spokeswoman has said.

She added that a contract with professional services firm KPMG, which included work to reduce expenses, will run until 2023 and cost about $5 million in total.

A list of contracts published in the Official Gazette also contained a $285,000 agreement to hire a corporate governance consultant and a $900,000 deal to replace a generator.

The list showed the agreement with KPMG was for the fourth phase of “consultancy support to Bermuda Hospitals Board” and cost about $2 million from August 2020 to August 2023.

A BHB spokeswoman said: “Even prior to the pandemic, we were focused on ensuring hospital services were as effective and efficient as possible.

“Efficient services are better for patient care, improved outcomes as there are fewer delays and duplications, and overall helps the healthcare system save unnecessary costs.

“With the financial impact of the pandemic we are now facing challenging financial shortfalls so this work has become even more critical just for us to break even.”

She added: “KPMG has been partnering with us to improve efficiency in the delivery of services at BHB for just over two years.

“The initial contract signed in 2018 was extended through 2019, then renewed in 2020.

“The work has focused on efficiencies and services improvements that will help us reduce costs and has included some strategy work in collaboration with Government, as well support for BHB’s strategy.

“In total – from 2018 to date – BHB cost savings projects supported by KPMG have saved nearly $30 million in costs.”

The spokeswoman said that staff from KPMG and the hospital tackled a range of projects, including the improvement of “patient flow” through faster admission and discharge procedures.

She said that work was also carried out to find better drug procurement deals, develop more efficient schedules for nurses and doctors and reduce overtime.

Contract reviews and the sale of unused properties were included in “financial efficiencies” projects.

The spokeswoman added: “The total combined cost of both the previous and current contracts, including the extension, is about $5 million over five years.”

She said that the first three phases of the partnership focused on “efficiency and effectiveness”.

The spokeswoman added: “Phase four included similar improvement projects but also the addition of strategic work both within BHB – as we develop our next five year strategy – and some collaborative work with Government in planning services.

“From a governance perspective, the contract for this phase was renewed, rather than extended, to ensure appropriate governance over and transparency to the new work streams.

“This process included an evaluation of performance during the first three phases and a review on the return on investment.

“KPMG personnel advise and support BHB projects but do not manage work streams.”

The list of contracts also showed a $285,000, 13-month agreement with The Platinum Group, a recruitment and human resource management company, for a corporate governance consultant.

The spokeswoman said: “This contract is for the company secretary position – the person who ensures correct governance and administration for the board and subcommittees, and attends and minutes the board meetings.”

She added: “We are seeking to recruit a full time company secretary but have not yet been able to identify a suitable candidate.

“We are currently contracted with Platinum to manage the key board responsibilities part-time while the job description is reviewed and our plan is to run the advertisement again.”

A 12-month contract for “executive leadership” with Gartner Ireland was listed with a value of $89,800.

The BHB spokeswoman said: “Gartner Ireland is a leading information technology research and advisory company who support BHB decision making to ensure best value for contracted IT services.

“Gartner provides research and advice on information systems for our healthcare applications, infrastructure and security.

“With their services we are able to assess what has worked well within the industry.”

The total value of the 14 contracts listed, from January 1, 2020 to March 5, 2025, was more than $5.8 million.

The BHB spokeswoman said: “Most of the contracts listed cover multiple years, the longest being five years.

“A number of contract costs this year relate to our estate and could not be avoided due to the age of our infrastructure.”

She added that the maintenance cost of the acute care wing were part of an annual payment to Paget Health Services – a consortium of Bermudian and overseas companies formed to build and run the new wing at the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital.

But the spokeswoman said that the BHB stil had to “maintain the ageing general wing of KEMH, MWI and the other buildings on its campuses to ensure they are safe”.

The list included a six-month deal worth more than $930,000 with Noesis Limited for a “generator replacement project”.

The spokeswoman said: “The generator replacement project is for the general wing at KEMH.

“The Belco power outage last month highlighted it is a critical need to replace the ageing generator as there was a delay in switching over when the power went out.

“The order had been put in about six weeks before the power outage.”

Roof repairs at the KEMH general wing were carried out under a contract worth almost $225,000 with construction company Kaissa.

The spokeswoman added that upgrades to the MWI kitchen – in a deal with Barclays Construction that cost almost $378,000 over a year – were “needed to ensure meals for patients and staff could be prepared in a safe and appropriate setting”.

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Published January 04, 2021 at 8:02 am (Updated January 04, 2021 at 7:54 am)

KPMG helps save BHB $30m in costs

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