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By | Mark Ballard 15th June 2006 12:41

NHS IT fiasco claims scalp at iSoft

iSoft CEO resigns after calamitous start to the year

iSoft's CEO has stepped down after the firm was caught up in the NHS IT fiasco.

In a statement to the City yesterday, Tim Whiston said: "I have become increasingly concerned that my continued role with the Company may represent a source of negative speculation and comment, being an unhelpful distraction to those within it."

As a major supplier of software to the multi-billion NHS IT programme, iSoft has been pincered by painfully tight contractual terms and poor execution of the programme by the NHS. The contract means iSoft doesn't get a fig till it delivers the goods.

This should not have been news to anyone with a close eye on the firm. Nevertheless, iSoft shares have dived nearly 90 per cent from around 400p since January, when Whiston announced that revenues and profits from the programme would be £55m and £45m lower respectively than expected this year.

Its share price has rallied a little to around 60p since Whiston said he would go. A National Audit Office report into the NHS IT programme, due any day now, might also make the future a little clearer for financial forecasters.

iSoft chairman John Weston will look after the the CEO's job till a replacement is found.®

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