back to article New Zealand health boards write down losses on Oracle implementation

Local health boards in New Zealand have been forced to write down losses running into the millions of Kiwi dollars as a result of a troubled Oracle implementation. Down the drain - Shutterstock Hundred-million Kiwi Oracle project on hold after Deloitte review READ MORE The government of the island country put the National …

  1. bryces666

    Yeah, right...

    "confident that the NOS programme will be supported and completed"

    Or more current

    Yeah.... Nah.

  2. b0llchit

    Worn out road to the bank

    Makes one wonder who is laughing all the way to the bank, and in that process, wearing out the roads leading up to the bank(s), causing even more costs for repairing those roads.

    Damn, I am in the wrong business. Should be able to lie, wear a suit and be able to babble expensive words, damn me.

    1. Giovani Tapini Silver badge

      Re: Worn out road to the bank


      So you want to become the next POTUS?

      1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: Worn out road to the bank

        So you want to become the next POTUS?

        Frankly, it would be something of a relief to have one who looked and sounded good again. At least that would be something.

        If we must have evil, couldn't it be quality evil?

  3. Tom 7 Silver badge

    a troubled Oracle implementation.

    tautology at its redundant best.

    1. Milton Silver badge

      Re: a troubled Oracle implementation.

      "tautology at its redundant best"

      Didn't you mean an "unnecessarily, redundantly superfluous tautology"?

      That's probably how it would be described in an Oracle manual. I consulted for a while in the mid/late 90s for an company that had recently become an Oracle victim customer, and we used to laugh at the way a single CD would arrive in a box the size of a desktop PC. The whole impression-vs-actuality image was quite telling.

      Anyway, hands up anyone who is surprised, even the tinest bit, that public sector procurement and management combined with Oracle competence and efficiency has resulted in anything other than disastrous delivery and ruinous waste.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: a troubled Oracle implementation.

        "public sector procurement and management combined with Oracle competence and efficiency has resulted in ...[...].....disastrous delivery and ruinous waste"

        Except that it hasn't. It HAS gone badly wrong. But the costs are small change, particularly when compared to the billion dollar plus screw ups seen with unfortunate frequency across the US, Canada, UK and Australia - and those often for sub-systems like payroll rather than a full ERP and financial suite.

        I'd argue the Kiwis are doing a whole lot better than other health services.

  4. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge

    Oracle can fix it

    They just need a little more funding and more information

  5. Alan Brown Silver badge

    "designed to replace financial and supply chain systems used by the District Health Boards"

    When you consider that SOME of the DHBs were running their entire multi-hundred-million-dollar systems on excel spreadsheets(*), even this fustercluck was an improvement.

    (*) My co-directors decided if it was good enough for the DHB it was good enough for them(**) and hired one of the programmers over to do the same for our company. It didn't end well.

    (**) None of this foreign-sourced accounting program malarky here, me lad!

  6. Anonymous Coward

    Review of the consultants engaged to review the Deloitte review

    Deloitte Review of the National Oracle Solution programme and Audit NZ Review of the engagement of consultants for the Deloitte review

    “In late 2017 the Ministry commissioned Deloitte to review the National Oracle Solution programme to inform its advice to the Government. In late August 2018 the Health Committee requested the Ministry of Health provide the Audit NZ report the Ministry had commissioned into its engagement of consultants for the Deloitte Review.”

    “We have provided the Committee with the Deloitte Review of the National Oracle Solution programme, the Audit NZ Review of the engagement of consultants for that report and our action plan to address Audit NZ’s recommendations.”

  7. david 12 Silver badge

    New Sydney Healthscope Hospital

    Meanwhile, the new hospital in Sydney, run by Healthscope, has suffered a complete failure of their "supply chain solution" -- something they've managed to keep pretty much out of the news, with reports like this:

    "The staffing and supply shortages at the hospital were characterised as "hiccups" and "teething problems" by Health Minister Brad Hazzard, Premier Gladys Berejiklian and the chair of NBH’s medical advisory board Dr Stuart Pincott"

    Among other failings, they decided go with a "just in time" ordering system, which hasn't delivered supplies "in time" at all:

    "Anaesthetists at the new $600 million Northern Beaches Hospital (NBH) have threatened to cancel all elective surgery, and doctors have called a crisis meeting within hours of the facility's official opening."

    Of course first reports were very positive: "Visitors were served beef and vegetables for dinner, and a hot breakfast of bacon, sausages and an omelette." -- "Visitors" don't see software, so who cares?

    1. Giovani Tapini Silver badge

      Re: New Sydney Healthscope Hospital

      JIT for a hospital does not sound a very good idea at all regardless of implementation. Especially if that is apparently involving medical supplies.

      A factory running out of materials is expensive, and annoying but is not life and death.

      Medicine is a great source of what may be "characterised" as unpredictable workloads in their speak. It is not a production line, like the delivery of toilet roll or catering supplies. I certainly would not want to be the one saying, "sorry madam we couldn't save him, the supplies needed were stuck on the motorway"

      Sounds to me like the model is doomed to fail regardless of software and comes right back to poor management decisions.

  8. Craigie


    Not even once.

  9. Andrew Barr

    At which point

    At which point will a national body (anywhere in the world) say no to an oracle based system due to past performances.

    I also wonder where oracle appear in the garner magic quadrant, they must be getting pretty low to the bottom left square by now, or is it only in the ones that they don't pay for?

  10. Criggie


    Strange that as a kiwi, I'm reading this in a UK source.

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