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Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845. (Read 23,498 times)
bigjohn
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Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Nov 22nd, 2005 at 2:14pm
 
Saw this item on the South West News.Amazing that Rob Harder the  NHS Telecoms Manager in question doesnt know the cost of 0845 call,or that people are charged the same for a geo call,whether the call originates locally or further afield.Also he conveniently fails to mention increased  cost of calling from mobile,s and payphones.

At least they admit they will make money from the use of NGN.

See http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/devon/4457388.stm
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« Last Edit: Nov 22nd, 2005 at 2:19pm by bigjohn »  

BJ.
 
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davis
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #1 - Nov 22nd, 2005 at 5:38pm
 
It does not surprise me at all to learn that he does not know the cost of the call. He does at least know that they are using non-geo numbers. I am a town councillor and we recently had a council meeting with the chief executive of the Gwent AHA; we asked why the trust was using an 0845 number for the out of hours service for GP's. He advised us that they were not until we produced a pamphlet that stated the contact no was 0845. Somewhat embarrassed he stated that he knew nothing about this or the costs of using non geo numbers. He promised to get back to us 6 months ago-we are still waiting!
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Dave
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #2 - Nov 22nd, 2005 at 5:46pm
 
Quote:
Plymouth Primary Care Trust and Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust are making the changes to make the numbers simpler and cheaper for all users.

Huh Huh Huh Huh Roll Eyes Roll Eyes

Cheaper for all?
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Dave
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #3 - Nov 22nd, 2005 at 5:55pm
 
It appears that they have gone over to VoIP. See here.
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idb
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #4 - Nov 23rd, 2005 at 2:02am
 
<<
Telecommunications Manager Rob Harder said: "With 0845 numbers the Trusts' patients, their relatives and friends are treated with equity.

"Whether they live within or outside the Plymouth area, calls to 0845 numbers are charged at the local call rate, 4p per minute at peak call times.

"We are also trying to simplify our telephone contact numbers.

"At the moment we have 4,500 direct dial numbers, many of which bear no resemblance to each other."
>>

He needs to be FIRED. The consequences of shifting to a NGN are potentially serious. This shows how utterly clueless these people are. This guy is a 'telecommunications manager' - one would assume that he 'knows his stuff' but clearly does not. One wonders how these people would deal with a real crisis. Now, where is Ofcom to intervene and point out the problems? Nowhere because it doesn't give a toss. Mr Harder should receive his pink slip tomorrow.

FOI in due course.
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As from November 21, 2013, I no longer participate in the forum and am unable to receive private messages.
 
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bbb_uk
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #5 - Nov 23rd, 2005 at 5:00pm
 
I have emailed the PCT yesterday on this with my usual stuff but taken out stuff that doesn't apply that I normally put in an FOI request.

I today received a reply stating my comments had been passed to Telecoms manager and the Communications Manager.

My email to the hospital was bounced back stating delivery had reached the receipient but delivery was refused.
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Shiggaddi
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #6 - Nov 23rd, 2005 at 5:30pm
 
I live close to Plymouth, and our nearest hospital is Derriford in Plymouth.

It might be an idea to get our local paper, the Evening Herald, with their head offices within walking distance from Derriford, involved in this, and point out to one of their journalists about 0845 costs.  Maybe they'll take it up.
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I realy hait itt wen peeple canot spel proply. Itt getts onn mye nervs sew mutch annd streses mee owt. Knot onley iz itt vary bade speling butt allso bade gramer.
 
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bbb_uk
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #7 - Nov 24th, 2005 at 4:31pm
 
I today received a reply from Plymouth PCT:-
Quote:
I've taken a look at Mr xxx's email and understand most of his points, however, most of the pricing issues he has quoted are dependent on an individuals telephone line package, whether it be their home telephone line account or their mobile phone tariff. For example, Mr xxx quotes from the BT Choices discount package. As we've stated in our press release that we recognise that some people will pay more to call 0845 numbers and have done some investigation to assess the impact of this. There will be some people, outside of the local area who will pay less.

BT's current basic inland call price list (i.e. excluding any discount tariff plans) Section 2, Part 1 states that Local calls cost 4p per minute daytime/1p per minute evenings/weekends, National calls cost 8p per minute daytime/4p evenings/1.5p weekends. Local calls are defined as the local STD code (01752 for Plymouth) and its surrounding STD codes (01364-ASHBURTON, 01503-LOOE, 01548-KINGSBRIDGE, 01579-LISKEARD, 01822-TAVISTOCK). All other 01xxx & 02xxx calls are National calls. Section 2 Part 12 sub part 1 states that all 0845 calls are charged at the Local rate.

Section 2, part 1, sub part 6 states that BT's public payphone rates for 0845 calls are charged at the g5 rate (55 seconds per 10p), which equates to a call charge rate of 11p per minute. Obviously, some Hotel and other private payphone rates vary significantly and this may be what Mr xxx is referring to.

There are many mobile providers and networks, with numerous tariff plans and call rates. Vodafone have confirmed that their price plans charge the same for 0845 calls as for 01xxx and 02xxx, however this varies from 5p per minute upwards depending upon the specific price plan chosen by the individual.

Telewest, the supplier of the 0845 numbers, have confirmed that you can dial them from abroad. However, there may be some international destinations which apply some barring and again some international hotels and private payphone/phone systems may have introduced barring.

We have openly stated that we will receive income from 0845 calls, but this is not "just another money making scheme". The main point of the number change is to try to simplify and provide some consistency for the public when they contact us. As a current example, the Neuro Rehab service is about to move from the Rowans unit at Derriford on 01752 792088 to the newly refurbished Drake Unit at Mount Gould on 01752 434899. If we had the 0845 number in place, patients and relatives would not be inconvenienced by the number change. Changes to our services will continue in line with service improvements such as the LIFT projects, changes in the NHS generally and as we continue to introduce the new telephone system (01752 43xxxx) across the community. As such the 0845 number initiative will benefit the public in the longer term by providing continuity to the telephone numbers they contact us with. Additionally, again in the longer term, it will reduce the current confusion with our multiple number ranges in use, e.g. 01752 314xxx, 315xxx, 272xxx, 245xxx, 517xxx, 763xxx, 792xxx.

We are aware of the guidance issued from the Department of Health, OFCOM and other bodies on the use of non-geographic numbers, but can assure the public that the main reason for their introduction for Plymouth NHS services is related to the simplifying and continuity previously mentioned. Yes, we have openly stated that we will be receiving income from the 0845 calls, which will be used to reinvest in local NHS services, including the improvements and introduction of the new telephone system which would otherwise detract funding from front line NHS services.

The Trust considered using Freephone 0800 (which would have detracted funds from front line services), Lo-call 0845 (overall cost neutral), National 0870/1 and Premium Rate 09 numbers (which would have been income generating) to resolve the number complexity issue. The 0845 option was chosen as the most viable solution for Plymouth NHS, it's patients, their relatives, friends and our staff. This is in line with other NHS services such as NHS Direct 0845 4647
Any thoughts?
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Shiggaddi
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #8 - Nov 24th, 2005 at 5:17pm
 
BT's current basic inland call price list (i.e. excluding any discount tariff plans) Section 2, Part 1 states that Local calls cost 4p per minute daytime/1p per minute evenings/weekends, National calls cost 8p per minute daytime/4p evenings/1.5p weekends. Local calls are defined as the local STD code (01752 for Plymouth) and its surrounding STD codes (01364-ASHBURTON, 01503-LOOE, 01548-KINGSBRIDGE, 01579-LISKEARD, 01822-TAVISTOCK). All other 01xxx & 02xxx calls are National calls. Section 2 Part 12 sub part 1 states that all 0845 calls are charged at the Local rate.

Ah, the very old standard tariff option.  If a proper investigation was carried out, it would have revealed that the majority of customers will pay more, as we were forced onto Option 1.  Option 1, is now their standard tariff, with some more customers on Option 2, and Option 3, where calls to the old geographic number would be free on Option 3, and free during evenings and weekends on Option 2.

As we've stated in our press release that we recognise that some people will pay more to call 0845 numbers and have done some investigation to assess the impact of this. There will be some people, outside of the local area who will pay less.

Perhaps they can give an example of someone who has one of these special plans that gives cheaper calls to 0845 numbers, than 01/02 numbers.  I can't find any from BT, apart from the light user scheme.

There are many mobile providers and networks, with numerous tariff plans and call rates. Vodafone have confirmed that their price plans charge the same for 0845 calls as for 01xxx and 02xxx, however this varies from 5p per minute upwards depending upon the specific price plan chosen by the individual.

Can you supply a copy of Vodafone's letter please?  I'm under the impression that Vodafone don't charge the same rates for 0845 as 01/02, because I have inclusive minutes, and if I were to call 0845 numbers, I'd be charged for them.  If you know any information to the contrarary, then please let me know, cos Vodafone confirmed to me, that calls to Non Geographic numbers are chargeable.  This is confirmed in every bill I get, which is why I don't call them on my Vodafone.

Telewest, the supplier of the 0845 numbers, have confirmed that you can dial them from abroad. However, there may be some international destinations which apply some barring and again some international hotels and private payphone/phone systems may have introduced barring.

Right, better be careful of this, when I'm next on holiday, and check that I can call 0845 numbers back home, in case of emergency.  If I'm in a hospital abroad that uses one of these systems, and the doctor urgently need to call Derriford for my patient notes, having a system that might bar calls to 0845 numbers, but allow calls to 01/02 numbers back at home might result in the difference between life or death.  If this happens, I'm hoping that the media will have a field day out of this.

We have openly stated that we will receive income from 0845 calls, but this is not "just another money making scheme". The main point of the number change is to try to simplify and provide some consistency for the public when they contact us.

Isn't this charging for NHS services?  You have argued 10 years ago, that charging for car parking at Derriford is acceptable because we can use public transport, and those who live in outlying villages with no bus route choose to live there, and choose to use the car.  How can I avoid paying you, when I'm making a phone call then?  Are you providing a geographic alternative, so we have a choice?  If not, then we have no choice, we either pay you for your time on the phone, or not call.

If the Evening Herald have any journalistic integrity, then I hope that they will report this story and contradict the views on the NHS who seem to think we all pay 8p per minute to call 01/02 numbers, and get cheaper 0845 calls.

Out of interest, did they contact other mobile providers, or did they just come up with a response that they didn't want to publish, ie 0845 costs more at all times!!  It's convenient that on one of two tariffs on Vodafone PAYG, or after you have used your inclusive minutes, it costs the same to call 0845, as it does 01/02 numbers!!
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I realy hait itt wen peeple canot spel proply. Itt getts onn mye nervs sew mutch annd streses mee owt. Knot onley iz itt vary bade speling butt allso bade gramer.
 
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Dave
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #9 - Nov 24th, 2005 at 10:13pm
 
Hi bbb_uk, Did that reply come from Mr Harder?

I've emailed what I think is his email:

rob.harder [AT] pcs-tr.swest.nhs.uk

If anyone knows any different, let us know.
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jrawle
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #10 - Nov 25th, 2005 at 12:09am
 
Quote:
BT's current basic inland call price list (i.e. excluding any discount tariff plans) Section 2, Part 1 states that Local calls cost 4p per minute daytime/1p per minute evenings/weekends, National calls cost 8p per minute daytime/4p evenings/1.5p weekends.


All to often, companies use this as an excuse when introducing 0870/0845, while everyone knows here that it's a load of nonsense as very few people are on this tariff.

Do any of Ofcom's consultations include anything about removing these "BT Standard" prices so that no-one is allowed to refer to them any more (or... haven't they done that already?)

Also, we are supposed to have free competition in the telecoms market. BT isn't the national phone company any more. Most people will now be on a package with some sort of inclusive calls whether with BT or not.

Let's remember, though, that customer services departments are trained to churn out replies to fob off anyone who complains. No doubt they are aware of the situation, but quote the figures that are most favourable.
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bbb_uk
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #11 - Nov 25th, 2005 at 4:28pm
 
Dave wrote on Nov 24th, 2005 at 10:13pm:
Hi bbb_uk, Did that reply come from Mr Harder?

I've emailed what I think is his email:

rob.harder [AT] pcs-tr.swest.nhs.uk

If anyone knows any different, let us know.
The email address I was given (as he tried to send via someone else to avoid me knowing but he was cc'd anyhow), was rob.harder [Email AT sign] phnt.swest.nhs.uk.

I've yet to reply as I'm going to point out things he got wrong like only a very small percent of BT customers are on their undiscounted (BT Light User Scheme) tariff, whereas marjority of consumers (at least 95% I'd say) are on BT Together One.  The mobile costs he was given was wrong as well. 0845/0870 are excluded from all landline providers inclusive tariffs and most mobiles (except o2 I think).

I was also looking at the way forward doc as I'm sure Ofcom had a table of the costs involved in ringing these numbers (well it wasn't cost so much as how many sec's per minute or something) but can't seem to find it now when I scanned through it.
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Ian01
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #12 - Sep 30th, 2016 at 5:23am
 

In December 2009, the Department of Health directed NHS bodies to get rid of premium rate 084 numbers. This followed an earlier directive, in 2005, to get rid of 087 and 09 numbers.

Almost seven years later, Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust has decided to comply. From 1 October 2016, they will change to geographic 01 numbers.

See http://bit.ly/PHNT0845

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Heinz
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #13 - Oct 1st, 2016 at 11:38am
 
Would I be cynical in saying, "I bet they're not the last."?
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After years of ignoring govt. guidelines & RIPPING OFF Council Tax payers using 0845 numbers, Essex County Council changed to 0345 numbers on 2 November 2015
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Ian01
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Re: Another NHS Hospital Trust switches to 0845.
Reply #14 - Oct 1st, 2016 at 2:24pm
 

Your premium rate NHS, not 'free at the point of need':

http://www.google.com/search?num=100&q=site:nhs.uk+inurl:MapsAndDirections+%28%2...





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