Do you need to be a practicing clinician to be an effective CCIO?

edited July 2012 in General
Do you need to be a practicing clinician to be an effective CCIO? Or is it enough to have a clinical qualification and past clinical experience?

Best Answers

  • Answer ✓
    I guess it depends what sort of a CCIO you are. If you are trying to get things implemented in an acute hospital setting I think it helps if you have a real understanding of the processes. This helps you to remove obstacles to progress. A brilliant manager might be able to achieve the same thing through listening and imagination. I think it gives you a bit more passion for the job if it's actually going to affect your own working life.

    This week, for instance, I have been working on a system that will allow me to email my clinic letters to GPs directly from my clinic room. It will help to cut out several loops of useless and expensive secretarial activity. I am really looking forward to using it.

    And please tell Wai, that this will be an example of "agile" in the NHS. :)
  • Answer ✓
    +1 to Jack's comments above.

    One of the most important roles of a CCIO is in engaging their fellow clinical colleagues and working with them to implement IT that helps and enhances the care delivery process. Shared experiences of a being a clinical colleague and sometimes even with shared patients breaks down many barriers and helps greatly in this process.

    Whilst having a 'current' clinical practice helps, I think that a non-practising clinician with years of clinical experiences can also 'do the job' effectively. For eg. think of full-time medical directors.

    @JackBarker: Not sure if that's my understanding of 'agile' software development :)

  • Answer ✓
    I learnt a great new word - homophily, peer-to-peer understanding. 'skin in the game' is what counts with credibility!
  • Yes
  • I have found in my role a clinical background has opened some of those closed doors. Give credibility to the post, in all arenas.
  • SamSam
    Answer ✓
    At this stage I am inclined to agree and say 'yes'. Only a clinician can gain entry to clinicians to evoke change and embrace technology. Change needs to be in-built from Medical School upwards and Clinicians downwards. We are talking Cultural Change, which takes time, a plan and persistence to implement. However, there is already a shift in this direction occurring but with the right approach we could do more to speed things up. It will however, need to continually be measured, monitored and progressed until the current culture has changed. In conclusion, I do not believe that only clinicians can carry out the role of CCIO. However, at least one enthusiastic clinician will be required to work in close association with the CCIO but this will be a temporary role. You see it depends upon the role of CCIO, where it begins and where it ends. Is it a clinical PR role? or is it a Cultural and Technology development role? I would say both initially, but the need for a clinician will drop off as the culture changes.
  • SamSam
    Answer ✓
    As the CCIO role develops, the holder of the role will also develop. They are bound to develop their knowledge of clinical practices and their relationships with clinicians and others. As the culture changes, the role of CCIO will change also.
  • @Sam I think I agree with you, but not sure if, when you refer to 'Clinician' you only mean doctors (ref. your comment about medical school). My view is that any clinically qualified professional can be a CCIO (nurse, therapist, doctor), not just a doctor. I do agree with you that this is about cultural change and on that point, I would widen your suggestion about being built in from medical school upwards and clinicians downwards, but I would widen this out to include other clinical educational facilities (for nurses and therapists) and of course, to compliment this, downwards from all clinicians.
  • Answer ✓

    This week, for instance, I have been working on a system that will allow me to email my clinic letters to GPs directly from my clinic room. It will help to cut out several loops of useless and expensive secretarial activity. I am really looking forward to using it.

    Jack, interested to hear this. I've been working with the NHS Innovation and Improvement team in Leeds to identify common-sense and proven digital initiatives that will help to save the NHS time and money (and the patient as well). Whilst some solutions can be enhanced by the use of digital (e.g. for letters using some form of 'postal distribution server', i think they may be thillingly called), encouraging staff to take the initiative with available techonology and common sense by leading from a position of example is by far the best way.

    I think as the CCIO role evolves it will be important to consider how to infuse behaviour change amongst staff and not just to be shaking the great white stick of Progress.

Answers

  • Well it will become "agile" when we mess it up the first time, and need to iterate in an unplanned way bringing together me (consumer and developer) with my mate Elijah (developer). At the moment he is refusing to be agile by working on something else - humph.
  • Hi @pshannon 'homophily' great new word for me will have to find a way to work it to a feature. We recently ran a CCIO event in which Dr Jonathan Richardson described a CCIO as like 'Heineken' reaching the parts of an organisation other information specialists can't...
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