Capita tipped for £60 million NHS web contract

Capita is set to develop the NHS' online presence, a contract which could be worth some 60 million over three years.

The Department of Health (DoH) has named Capita its preferred bidder for the contract to run NHS Choices, the department's online network offering information to patients and carers. The deal has yet to be finalised, and could be extended for another two years.

Capita will handle the hosting of NHS Choices, as well as technical and content development, the firm said.

Paul Pindar, chief executive of Capita Group, said in a statement: "This is core to transforming the way patients interact with clinicians and will provide more efficient access to health education and self help services."

Dr Foster Intelligence launched NHS Choices for the DoH last year. That 18-month contract runs out in August. The site saw 2.5 million visits last month, and has seen growth of 35 per cent this year.

Dr Foster Intelligence is a joint venture between the firm Dr Foster and an NHS body. Its creation was slammed last year by MPs, who said it was formed through exclusive, unfair negotiations which ignored treasury guidelines.