Lascad Essay

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MIS Case 2 London Ambulance Service Computer Aided Dispatch (LASCAD) The London Ambulance Service Computer Aided Despatch (LASCAD) system failed dramatically on 26 October 1992, shortly after it was introduced. Neither the Computer Aided Despatch (CAD) system itself, nor its users, were ready for full implementation. The CAD software was not complete, not properly tuned, and not fully tested. The system could not cope with the load placed on it by normal use. A series of errors were made in the procurement, design, implementation, and introduction of the system. Ambulance crew staff had no confidence in the system and were not fully trained. There had been no attempt to foresee fully the effect of inaccurate or incomplete data available to the system. In particular, the decision on that day to use only the computer generated resource allocations was a high risk move. Following are the problems that existed in LASCAD, and some causes: • Existing systems were dismissed as inadequate and impossible to modify to meet LAS’s needs • Contract had to be put out to open tender • Most suppliers raised concerns over the proposed timetable of less than 1 year • Only 1 of all the proposals met all of the project team’s requirements • System Options had no previous experience of building dispatch systems for ambulance services • The Systems Manager, a key member of the evaluation team, was already told that he was to make way for a properly qualified systems manager. • Concerns raised at project meeting were not followed-up • Ambulance crews were not consulted for development of original requirements • Training provided to ambulance crews was incomplete and inconsistent; and there was a large gap between training and implementation of the system • LAS had poor industrial relations • CAD system was
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