Keith McNeil appointed Queensland chief medical information officer
Former Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital CEO and NHS England chief clinical information officer Keith McNeil is returning to Brisbane from the UK to take up the newly created role of assistant deputy director general and chief medical information officer (CMIO) with Queensland Health.
Professor McNeil, a lung transplant specialist and respiratory physician who once served in the Australian Special Forces as a weapons expert, was also CEO of Addenbrooke’s Hospital and Cambridge University Hospital Foundation Trust when that organisation went through a much-criticised implementation of an Epic electronic medical record that has since been held up as one of the best in the UK.
Professor McNeil resigned when the trust was put into 'special measures'.
Deputy director general of Queensland Health’s clinical excellence division John Wakefield said the appointment of Professor McNeil would drive patient safety, quality improvement and clinical improvement agendas across Queensland.
Dr Wakefield said the new role required a high level of technical competency combined with substantial clinical and managerial experience.
“Keith is a very good fit for this position,” Dr Wakefield said in a statement. “He offers a wealth of both clinical and executive management experience, having previously worked within Queensland Health as the head of transplant services at The Prince Charles Hospital, CEO at RBWH and health service chief executive at Metro North.
“Keith will play a critical role in leading the governance of the state-wide eHealth program. He will also work with key stakeholders to maximise the benefits and minimise the risks associated with the use of information technology in clinical practice.
“It is important we have the correct fit for the role as it requires someone who is highly knowledgeable from a clinical perspective and is able to act with agility and flexibility to pursue outcomes in a timely and strategic manner.”
Professor McNeil was appointed as the NHS's first CCIO and head of IT in 2016, where he reported to the national director of operations and information Matthew Swindells, who in turn took over from Australian Digital Health Agency CEO Tim Kelsey.
Dr Wakefield said Professor McNeil's knowledge of and relationships within the Queensland Health system, combined with his experience in healthcare delivery and eHealth, will be a key asset in ensuring that the roll-out of eHealth in Queensland hospitals over the next few years will be done safely with maximum benefit for patients and clinicians.
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