by Thomas Macaulay

NHS CCIO Simon Eccles appointed deputy CEO of NHSX

Jul 08, 2019

New government healthtech unit NHSX has appointed two key IT leaders to its executive board.

NHSX CEO Matthew Gould announced on Twitter that Simon Eccles, the Chief Clinical Information Officer for the entire NHS, will now also serve as deputy CEO of NHSX, while Hadley Beeman will step in as acting CTO.

Read next: What is NHSX? Inside the government’s new healthtech unit

Beeman will be responsible for designing and delivering a new internet-based technical architecture for all of the NHS and social care and for overseeing NHSX’s engineering and infrastructure work.

“I’m thrilled to be joining NHSX as acting CTO,” Beeman said in a tweet. “We have a lot of work to do to get our systems talking to each other (standards and APIs) and get patient info to where they need it most (user needs). I’m joining a brilliant team and can’t wait to get stuck in!”

Read next: Why are so many CIOs leaving the NHS?

Both Gould and Beeman have previously worked closely with Hancock before joining NHSX, which is widely viewed as the health secretary’s attempt to gain oversight of the NHS’ digital strategy. Gould previously worked at the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, where Hancock was a minister until his appointment as health secretary last year, while Beeman’s previous role was chief technology advisor to Hancock.

Eccles has also shown support for Hancock’s plans for healthcare. At the Westminster Health Forum in November 2018, he praised the “tech vision” that Hancock had launched the previous month.

Read next: NHS CCIO Simon Eccles backs Matt Hancock’s tech vision in his plans for a data-driven NHS

“We have a degree of political support for this agenda that I have never previously experienced, and I’ve been through seven secretaries of state,” said Eccles.

“It is phenomenal, and actually genuinely impressive … He’s published his tech vision about how we drag the NHS out of being special and different and having to do it our way and into modern enterprise tech and has put money behind it.”

Eccles was also present at the formal launch of NHSX on 1 July, where Hancock described him as the “Eccles cake of NHSX”.