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NHS loses digital director Beverley Bryant to private sector

The director of digital transformation at NHS Digital has led several key technology programmes in the health service, but is moving to work for a supplier

Beverley Bryant, one of the key players in the government’s £1.8bn plan to deliver a “paperless NHS”, is leaving the health service for a new job in the private sector.

Bryant, currently director of digital transformation at NHS Digital, is joining the System C & Graphnet Care Alliance as chief operating officer, from 1 August. The alliance is a partnership between two suppliers specialising in health and social care IT systems – Bryant will join the boards of both companies.

She was formerly director of strategic systems and technology at NHS England, but moved to NHS Digital last year to lead some of its core NHS-wide digital programmes.

Computer Weekly understands that Bryant applied to become the new CEO of NHS Digital, but the job was given to Sarah Wilkinson, currently chief digital, data and technology officer at the Home Office.

“The System C & Graphnet Care Alliance stands out for me because they work across the whole health and social care economy,” said Bryant in a statement. “They have real drive, a substantial user base and an excellent delivery record.

“I am really pleased and excited to be joining the supplier community to help drive real change at such a critical moment.”

In November 2016, Bryant called on IT suppliers to the NHS to raise their game and make software more usable and interoperable.

“We need suppliers to step up to the challenge and work with NHS Digital and digital leaders to deliver usable healthcare IT,” she said at the EHI Live 2016 event in Birmingham.

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During her time in the health service, Bryant has led high-profile initiatives such as Integrated Digital Care Records, NHS E-referrals, Patient Online and electronic prescriptions. Before joining the NHS, she was managing director at Capita Health and CIO of the Department of Health for three years.

“Beverley is the leading light of healthcare informatics,” said Markus Bolton, joint CEO and founder of System C, and director of Graphnet. “She could have chosen a role at any business in the UK, so we are delighted that she chose to join us.”

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