Lee Rickes, programme director for the Yorkshire and Humber Care Record, is our next Advisory Panel member taking part in our profile series. Lee talks to Digital Health News about the challenges facing CIOs and why he would travel back in time to meet Roman Emperor, Aurelian.

How did you become a CCIO/CIO?

I moved from the military aircraft industry as an engineer to focussing on programmes and change in the NHS, which included more and more technology. I eventually became a CIO and more recently I also became the programme director for the Yorkshire and Humber Care Record.

My CIO role (or programme director) is based upon me being able to bridge technology and innovation discussions with my organisation and partners. It’s not because of my detailed knowledge of servers, networks, clinical systems (things with plugs on the end)

What is the most challenging part of the CIO role?

Managing time so I can be visible across partners, patients, staff and stakeholders.

Within your organisation, what is the most significant digital achievement of the past 12 months?

For my trust it’s implementing electronic prescribing as a Wave 1 ePMA site. The reason this is the most significant achievement is due to the clinical leadership and ownership of electronic prescribing. It is a real benefit for the staff on the wards, pharmacy teams, medics, junior doctors and even finance (by improving patient level costing information).

For the Yorkshire & Humber Care Record (YHCR) it is getting a great team together to deliver our Local Health Care Record Exemplar (LHCRE). The team have already created the regional integration solution, joined a further 80 GP site to the YHCR and are now pushing forward with population health.

What’s the largest barrier to achieving digital transformation?

The largest barrier to digital transformation is to keep calling it digital transformation. It’s just transformation which includes technology, people, processes, leadership, and communication. I feel a major barrier for transformation is the appetite for risk with organisations choosing to “wait and hope” rather than transform and lead.

What is the most over-hyped digital innovation in health?

Fitness trackers (no specific brands). In a majority of cases they are being used by the walking well who are already thinking about their lifestyle and health.

What’s the worst job you’ve ever had and why?

I was an apprentice fitter at a company which manufactured a household product used to improve the appearance of textiles, especially white fabrics during laundering.  There was a blue dye which would get everywhere and there is a nasty chemical process to create it. My main job would be to repair the pumps that push the blue around the system. I would be covered in blue and was glad to move to my next placement and not look like a Smurf.

If you could have any other job, what would it be?

I would love be a stay at home Dad and bring up my kids. You only have one shot and you miss stuff when you are working.

What’s the background image on your phone?

It just a black. Sad but it extends the battery life?

What’s the last TV series you binge-watched?

GLOW (Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling) on Netflix.

If you could travel back in time to meet one person, who would it be?

Aurelian, he was the Roman Emperor who joined the fractured parts of the Empire back together in 5 years during the Crisis of the Third Century. Basically a guy who could get stuff done quickly.

In a film of your life, who would play you?

Tom Cruise, another vertically challenged person.