The award of the controversial Federated Data Platform (FDP) contract for the NHS has been delayed again with detail emerging how data analytics software company Palantir Technologies influenced the procurement process. Although NHS England insists competition would be fair, unsubstantiated claims date discussions commenced with Matthew Swindells, national director for operations and information at NHS England and Improvement (NHSE&I), as far back as September 2019. Then in late 2021, Palantir published a white paper that included parallels to the NHS data strategy, which didn't emerge until June the following year. The contract valued at £360 million is reported to be a must win deal for Palantir.
The Guardian reported Palantir was the favourite to win the contract in June, while in July, The Register revealed the government refused to open a public consultation ahead of the contract award. In August, the National Data Guardian's annual report revealed jurors were also not supportive of the NHS COVID-19 Data Store.
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