News stories coming out of HC2008:
The Department of Health has advertised for an NHS chief information officer. Headhunters have been recruited and interviews will take place in a couple of months.
Matthew Swindells, acting NHS CIO, told the HC2008 annual healthcare IT conference at Harrogate: “This is an absolutely crucial position, linking the policy to the strategy, to the informatics. If we can drive that from the top then other things become a lot easier for everybody.”
Sir Professor Keogh, the Department of Health’s medical director, is to become the department’s interim director general of informatics.
He will take over from Matthew Swindells, the current DH director general of informatics, who has announced earlier this month he is to join consultants Tribal Group at the end of his current secondment.
Swindells, who has been responsible for undertaking a wide-ranging role of NHS informatics due for publication this summer, has been on secondment with the DH since November 2007.
Departing CIO at the Department of Health, Matthew Swindells, has stressed the importance of the NHS using information to make the service better.
In the opening speech at the Healthcare Computing conference in Harrogate today, Swindells stressed that NHS managers must see information they produce as an asset, and not just numbers.
“NHS managers must be able to understand the information they are producing, and use it to improve their services. If they can’t explain it to their staff, then they are letting patients down. Information is a core part of their jobs, not simply an enabler,” he said.