GTE Health Systems and IBM (U.K.) Ltd. will provide a $40 million hospital information system to a consortium of three hospital districts in the West Midlands Region of the United Kingdom.

"The sale is the largest combined hospital information system ever sold in the United Kingdom," said Julie Klapstein, vice president and general manager of GTE Health Systems' Hospital Information Systems Division, in a Tuesday press conference.The system will support 2,500 hospital beds in five hospitals in the Coventry, East Birmingham and South Warwickshire hospital districts. The districts will use GTE Health Systems' MedSeries4 software on the IBM AS/400 computer.

Installation of the system is expected to begin in February 1992 and should be completed within three years.

The software developed by GTE Health Systems represents $16 million of the $40 million total. The rest comprises hardware, networking and related equipment. But Klapstein said company officials anticipate additional sales in the United Kingdom and Europe once the information system is in place.

The MedSeries4 modular software will support the hospitals' financial, patient management, administrative, communications and clinical operations.

GTE Health Systems, with major offices in Salt Lake City and Phoenix, will provide ongoing support, software enhancements and any additional software applications through individual contracts with the hospitals.

The company employs about 300 people in Salt Lake City, but Klapstein said the contract could provide 30 additional jobs in Utah. Also, an unspecified number of system installers would be hired in Utah and the United Kingdom.

Lt. Gov. Val Oveson said GTE Health Systems' successful contract negotiations are a "good example how we here in Utah can compete in the worldwide environment and the worldwide market."

"We're delighted to have them in Utah as a corporate citizen," Oveson said.

Klapstein said the company will work with the Department of Community and Economic Development's office in Brussels, Belgium, to continue to develop business leads.