NHS Wales Informatics Service is set to rebrand as Digital Health and Care Wales next month putting it on a statutory footing.

As of 1 April 2021 the new special health authority will continue to develop the core development and operational services of the Informatics Service to support “greater mobilisation and accessibility to data and information”.

The creation of Digital Health and Care Wales puts a stronger focus on national technology and data services, according to interim chief executive Helen Thomas.

“We are in a great position to move forward, as one of the few nations with an integrated national digital record to support patient care, available across all care settings. But there is so much more to do and we will need to ensure we are able, with our partners, to rise to this challenge,” Thomas said in a statement.

The new digital health organisation will be lead by interim chair Bob Hudson, who helped establish Public Health Wales NHS Trust, and new board secretary Chris Darling, currently assistant director of corporate business at Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board.

Further board members will be announced in the coming months.

“The pandemic has highlighted the wider role technology can play in supporting and improving our health and care services. It has changed attitudes, accelerated uptake and spurred on new digital solutions,” Thomas added.

“Virtual consultations, remote access to the single health record and advanced data services are helping all of us get through a difficult situation. So, during this crisis, it has been hugely rewarding to receive positive feedback from our users and stakeholders.

“As we know health technology is a core service for health and care in Wales. And the IT systems and services we have developed and delivered over the past decade remain critical for the day to day running of health and care in Wales.”

We are the hosts of Digital Health Rewired 2021, the must-attend virtual festival celebrating the best of digital health and care, taking place across 15-19 March 2021. Get a flavour of Rewired 2021 from the video below. You can book your place here