The wait is finally over – the winners of the 2021 Digital Health Awards have been revealed at the Autumn Leadership Summit.

The victors were announced at a special networking and awards dinner held at the Park Regis in Birmingham on 7 October.

The awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of leaders making the biggest contributions to UK healthcare IT, and are the most prestigious peer-voted awards in the UK digital health sector.

The 6,000 members of the Digital Health Networks were asked to vote for the CCIO, CIO, and CNIO of the Year, with a special judging panel selecting the Future Digital Leader of the Year and Digital NHS CEO of the Year, a new category at this year’s awards.

The winners of the Digital Health Awards 2021 are:

  • Digital NHS CEO of the Year – Helen Thomas, CEO at Digital Health and Care Wales
  • Future Digital Leader of the Year – Aasha Cowey, strategic transformation lead at Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
  • CCIO of the Year (Sponsored by Sectra) – Sid Singh, CCIO and consultant urologist at George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust
  • CIO of the Year (Sponsored by InterSystems) – Paul Charnley, digital lead at Cheshire and Merseyside Health and Care Partnership
  • CNIO of the Year – Emily Wells, CNIO at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals Trust

Chris Scarisbrick, sales director at Sectra, said: “Many congratulations to Sid Singh on his success in this most distinguished of categories.

“To pick up this award with so many other deserving candidates speaks volumes for the achievements that have been made.”

David Hancock, healthcare executive advisor at Intersystems, added: “The finalists for the Digital Health CIO of the year 2021 reflected the big changes in NHS IT of the last couple of years.

“Gone are the days when the CIO is just focusing on improving digital maturity within their organisations for their healthcare professionals.

“Today, leading CIOs are building digital capability and supporting clinical transformation across multiple organisations – Integrated Care Systems (ICS) and Provider Collaboratives – and also driving innovation with how patients/citizens can be managed outside of clinical settings and how they can be meaningfully engaged and empowered.

“The shortlist truly reflected these changes, with all the finalists having proven accomplishments at improving digital maturity within their organisations, but now achieving exceptional success within their ICS or transforming Patient and citizen engagement. All the finalists would have been worthy winners, and they reflect the rude health of the CIO talent pool across the NHS.”