SCG acquired Storacall Technology Ltd (t/a X-on) the developer of Surgery Connect in March 2022.
SCG already had a significant presence in GP surgeries prior to the acquisition through its subsidiary Switch Medical but with the acquisition of X-on became the market leading provider of telephony in primary care.
X-on has been leading on cloud telephony for NHS general practice since it was founded in 2000.
It’s multi-award winning product, Surgery Connect, is already used by more than 30 per cent of surgeries across the country.
In order to support this growth, SCG is forming a dedicated business unit focused on primary care and GP Surgeries.
The team at Switch Medical and other specialists in the GP market will be joining the team at X-on to form X-on Health. Storacall Technology Ltd will be re-named X-on Health Ltd to recognise its singular focus.
Paul Bradford CEO SCG, says:
“Surgery Connect is the leading cloud telephony product in the market.
“I could not be more proud of the work the team at X-on Health are doing to support GP surgeries remove the 8am rush by providing surgeries with the tools to better manage patient demand.
“Bringing together all our best people from across the group is another step towards our goal of helping surgeries provide a better access experience for all patients.”
Surgery Connect grew its customer base by 50 per cent in the past year and now, as one of just five cloud telephony providers to be listed on a purchasing framework drawn up by NHS England to support a radical plan to improve access to GP services, is poised for this growth to accelerate.
The Advanced Telephony Better Purchasing framework will enable integrated care boards, primary care networks, and practices to procure the advanced communications platforms that are scheduled to play a pivotal role in the Delivery Plan for Recovering Access to Primary Care.
Launching the delivery plan, health and social care secretary Steve Barclay said replacing “old, analogue phones with modern systems” will help to end “the 8am scramble for appointments” by increasing capacity and making it easier for patients to “get the care they need as soon as possible.”
X-on’s market leading cloud telephony system, Surgery Connect, has been listed on the purchasing framework because it can deliver the benefits required.
These include unlimited ‘lines’, call-back functionality, and the ability to divert patients looking for prescriptions, test results and other services from the main queue.
Surgery Connect also gives administrative teams new sources of data to identify and address pressure points.
And it integrates with GP systems, so family doctors can contact patients by phone, email, and SMS from the electronic records they use every day.
X-on managing director Paul Bensley welcomed the publication of the plan, funding announcement, and purchasing framework.
“It is good to see the government and the NHS recognising the important role that cloud telephony can play in helping general practice to address the unprecedented demand that it is facing,” he said.
“The delivery plan lays out an ambitious agenda for modernising the way that patients contact their primary care teams and find the care they need, in a way that reduces the administrative burden on care navigators and GPs.
“Importantly, it is backed by funding and a purchasing framework to enable commissioners and practices to obtain the modern, functional systems they need; and I hope that procurement and implementation will now move forward at pace.”
NHS England conducted a market engagement exercise before publishing the Digital Care Services Cloud Telephony network to “set the strategic, technical and commercial direction for future services, as well as the standard for unified communications and telephony services in general and primary care.”
The five suppliers chosen for the framework all meet a “national cloud-based telephony specification” and NHS terms and conditions.
This means ICBs, PCNs and practices can be confident that, if they buy from the framework, they will be working with a supplier committed to delivering the benefits outlined in the new Delivery Plan for Recovering Access to Primary Care.
The framework also comes with support for: identifying requirements, procurement, exit from existing contracts, migration to new systems and supplier management.
Paul Bensley added:
“After two decades of innovating to support practices and patients, we are delighted to see the publication of this plan to use modern communications systems to improve access for all.
“We look forward to working with the NHS to deliver its vision.
“The bringing together of all SCG’s dedicated resources for primary care under X-on Health is an important step on our journey of setting the standards for using cloud telephony to improve patient access.”
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