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PICTFOR Health Tech Panel Event – Minutes



On 28th September 2020, PICTFOR held a virtual panel event on Health Tech. The event titled, How can the UK further lead the digital health revolution?  saw contributions from PICTFOR Co-Chair, Darren Jones MP, CEO of event Co-sponsor, Good Things Foundation, Helen Milner OBE, CEO of event Co-sponsor McKessonUK, Toby Anderson, and Senior Advisor in the Department of Digital Health and Innovation at the World Health Organisation, Dr Stephanie Kuku, MD. The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, The Rt Hon Matt Hancock MP submitted a video contribution which can be viewed here.



Event Chair:

  • PICTFOR Co-Chair, Baroness Neville-Rolfe DBE CMG



  • Lord McNally
  • Darren Jones MP
  • Owen Thompson MP
  • Jane Hunt MP
  • Alun Cairns MP
  • Mark Logan MP
  • Alex Waddington, Good Things Foundation
  • Alison Jones, McKessonUK
  • Andreas Haimboeck, IBM
  • Charles Hughes, Emanagment
  • Chris Francis, SAP
  • Chris Gibbons
  • Craig Whittall, University of Manchester
  • Damon Tojjar, VI-Health
  • Danny Stone, VI-Health
  • David Dinsdale, SAP
  • Geoffrey Southern, IBIGroup
  • Harvey Neve, Fimatix
  • Haude Lannon , Access Partnership
  • Jeremy Renwick, Agilesphere
  • Jeremy Swan, University of Birmingham
  • Jess Shaw, Fujitsu
  • Kamile Stankute, Virgin Media
  • Kathy Farndon, Carbonnel
  • Leila Romane, SAP
  • Patrick Stephenson, Fujitsu
  • Pete Evans, VI-Health
  • Philip Virgo
  • Richard Zhou, Huawei
  • Sean O’Callaghan, SAP
  • Susheel Varma, HDRUK
  • Tom Russell, techUK


  • The event chair, Baroness Neville-Rolfe DBE CMG opened the event by welcoming all PICTFOR members, Vice-Chairs, and attendees from the wider tech community, and thanking them for joining the call. She also thanked the event Co-sponsors, Good Things Foundation and McKessonUK for their role in the event. The Baroness then introduced PICTFOR Co-Chair, Darren Jones MP.


  • Darren Jones MP, began by noting his long belief that the adoption of technology can act as both a solution for productivity in the economy, and for efficiency in our public services. Adding that issues arise when attempting to roll out the adoption of technology, especially in organisations as complex as the NHS. On the pandemic, Darren discussed how lockdown measures had accelerated an inevitable shift toward virtual care, referencing apps being used in his constituency that allow patients to be discharged, and prescribed medicine remotely. Darren then touched on issues of digital exclusion, noting that for the tech to work, people must be able to access it. He went on to discuss the complex nature of private space designated for consultations, adding that if patients reply on publicly provided connectivity, they are unable to conduct a private, remote consultation with their GP.


  • CEO of Good Things Foundation, Helen Milner OBE began by echoing Darren’s points on the digital divide, saying that there are currently 9 million people in the UK who cannot use the internet without support. Helen added that statistically, these people are older, come from poorer backgrounds, didn’t do as well in their education and are more likely to be unemployed. She stated that these factors are the determents of digital exclusion, but they’re also the determinants of health inequality, highlighting the overlap between people experiencing the two. Helen went on to discuss how the lockdown had highlighted these issues as already marginalised communities were forced to make stark choices between affording food, or affording data, risking their health to go out and shop because they couldn’t access online shopping facilities, and further degrading mental wellbeing as a result of not being able to contact friends and family.


  • CEO of McKessonUK, Toby Anderson shared research the ICO conducted with Ofcom on the experience of people being online. He said that they had found that there is an increasing deficit of trust, with many people not comfortable with the level of innovation and change that is happening in society. He said that developments have not always brought the public along with innovation and that acquiescence doesn’t equal trust. He went on to say that to be more ethical, business models should not be built on the mass collection of data.


  • Senior Advisor in the Department of Digital Health and Innovation at the WHO, Dr Stephanie Kuku, MD detailed her background as a clinician, agreeing with Toby’s point that the pandemic had acted as a catalyst which sped up the rate of change in healthcare. She added that the pandemic had shown that technology must be mission critical to be adopted. Dr Kuku stated that it is vital that health tech is used as a valuable tool for the health sector, but not as a solution to reduce the need for face to face medicine. She suggested that industry should think about where the need for health tech is and where it can be implemented. She added that the NHS has a lot of problems that can’t be fixed by tech, and that we must be careful about prioritisation and measuring impact and outcomes at consumer level.


You can view a full recording of this event, here.

You can view a video contribution from the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, The Rt Hon Matt Hancock MP, here.


Please note: This is not an official publication of the House of Commons or the House of Lords. It has not been approved by either House or its committees. All- Party Parliamentary Groups are informal groups of Members of both Houses with a common interest in particular issues. The views expressed in this report are those of the group.


If you would like further information on this topic or about PICTFOR’s programme of events, please get in touch!

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