Five UK hospital trusts have signed new contracts worth £20m with a provider of medication adherence packaging and automated healthcare solutions.

Omnicell Ltd has announced the deals, which it says will increase cost efficiencies and save valuable estate space in the wake of the Carter Review.

The five new business contracts will see automated medical supply systems being installed in Wye Valley Trust, Maidstone & Tunbridge Wells, Southampton, Burton and Gateshead where they will manage a combined total of £20m of stock.

All five installations will go live this summer.

“Our existing partnerships with NHS Trusts have enabled us to see first-hand the results supplies management technology can bring,” said Paul O’Hanlon, managing director for Omnicell UK & Ireland.

“We very much look forward to working with these five Trusts to automate supplies in their hospital to drive cost savings and efficiencies and ensure a real and sustainable future for our prized NHS.”

The Lord Carter report highlighted that Trusts spend around £9bn on procurement of goods and services, £6bn of which is spent by the acute sector.

Around a third of this is spent on medical consumables and a third on high-cost medical devices.

Lord Carter stated he believed there are greater savings to be had by managing the demand for products via better inventory management systems.

The report said “very few trusts are able to demonstrate even a basic level of control or visibility over total inventory or purchase order compliance that is common practice in other health systems and industry sectors such as retail”.

It went on to suggest that a target saving of £700m to 1bn savings on the £9bn procurement spend was realistic.

Omnicell’s inventory management solutions include secure closed cabinets and open scanning systems which track inventory in real time and cost product usage to patients, healthcare consultants and procedures.

This data provides management teams with visibility of patient-costing and allows them to benchmark and analyse hospital costs.

In addition, clear visibility of stock levels ensures that hospitals only order what they really need rather than what they think they need.