The U.K. National Health Service (NHS) Wednesday announced that is has signed agreements with three information providers to create a new national health information extranet.

The agreements with Dialog, a Thompson Corp. business, BioMed Central Ltd. and ProQuest Co. are part of the National Core Content Project, which aims to give the NHS’s 1.2 million staff, plus other NHS-related workers, electronic access to core information resources, the NHS said in a statement Wednesday.

Information resources have been handled at a local level until now, but a decision was made last year to centralize the data, project manager Scott Gibbens said Wednesday.

“We get better value for money and a better (data) collection, too,” he said. Gibbens was hired last August on a two-year contract to manage the project, he said.

The deal is worth over