Could you give me an overview of your position and what it entails?
As head of healthcare for Fujitsu’s UK division, I am focused on how technology can be used to increase productivity and wellbeing for clinicians, improve the patient experience and strengthen the digital foundations for the NHS. I regularly engage with NHS trusts and integrated care systems to help them to understand their digital maturity and develop a roadmap for the future. This means addressing some of their biggest digital challenges, such as replacing large IT systems, more traditional technology upgrades, or starting the journey to cloud-first – all with the aim of improving the staff, clinician and patient experience.
An example is our ‘Imaging Anywhere’ technology which enables radiology staff to gain a hospital-grade experience when working from home. This gives the NHS the potential to employ qualified diagnostic staff anywhere in the UK and to attract retirees who may be interested in working on a part-time flexible basis. This matters because it’s widely recognised that there is a shortage of radiologists in the health service.
What is your vision for the healthcare sector?
I firmly believe UK healthcare has a significant opportunity to strive towards becoming a more productive, predictive and personalised healthcare service. My ambition is to enable the NHS to unlock innovation through bringing together the right eco-system of partners to solve the NHS’ most complex challenges. In order to do this, the NHS needs to have the right infrastructure foundations and systems in place to be able to use data to join-up the clinical and patient experience and drive improvements across the sector.
That’s why a significant aspect of our engagement with trusts and integrated care systems is through an infrastructure maturity model that we have developed in association with the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), which enables them to spot gaps and opportunities for improvement.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I am open, authentic and trusting. I enable my team to drive forward on initiatives and constructively challenge myself and the senior leadership team. At Fujitsu we have a collaborative environment; while the UK healthcare division is effectively a small start-up within a large corporate, so we have to be agile. Everyone has to pull together to reach the outcomes we want to achieve.
How have you reacted to the impact of the last 18 months?
Covid-19 has created challenges and opportunities for Fujitsu, both corporately and in terms of our engagement with customers. From a healthcare perspective, it initially put some of our projects on hold. Yet, at the same time, the pandemic has massively accelerated the agenda for change; it has also enabled some projects to progress that were previously stuck as a ‘nice to have’ concept.
As we emerge from the crisis, we need to think about how we support our customers and partners to make sure that that momentum isn’t lost, that we don’t default back to the old decision-making processes - and that the agility we’ve learned is retained.
What are your priorities going forwards?
We will continue to build our team, looking for technology experience and importantly, input from those who have direct experience of the NHS and the UK healthcare system.
We will continue to build our partner ecosystem of technology and health tech suppliers, to support lasting change in the sector. And we will look to build awareness of the benefits of cloud in the NHS, particularly in relation to large, integrated IT systems, where cloud-first approaches can deliver significant clinical, business and financial benefits.
We will also make sure that citizens and patients are at the heart of all our engagements with NHS trusts and integrated care systems, to make sure the experience of the healthcare system is frictionless for all.