The chairs of the Digital Health Networks have written an open letter to Amanda Pritchard and Dr Timothy Ferris to urge that the digital momentum is not lost following the announcement that NHS Digital and NHSX is to merge with NHS England and Improvement.

The letter follows the publication of the Wade-Gery Review, which looked into the digital responsibilities of different NHS agencies. This later led to the decision that NHSX and NHS Digital would become the Transformation and CIO Directorates of NHS England respectively.

In response to the news, the chairs of the Digital Health Networks, Lisa Emery (CIO Network), Sarah Hanbridge (CNIO Network) and James Reed (CCIO Network), have penned a letter to Amanda Pritchard, CEO of NHS England and Improvement and Dr Timothy Ferris, director of transformation at NHS England and Improvement.

The chairs have offered their assistance to ensure that “focus on digital transformation” across the NHS is maintained following the merger.

“There has been progress in terms of strategic direction, transparency of communication, and engagement with our members to help define the frameworks and measures to support this,” the letter states.

“We feel strongly that we would not want to see this momentum and engagement fall victim to the distractions of organisational change, and want to retain the current focus on frontline representation for our diverse digital community.

The chairs also emphasise “that the leadership of the digital agenda should be mandated at Board level – at the centre, regionally and locally”.

The letter adds: “Whilst highlighting where we see challenges, we are also keen to offer our continuing engagement and support to maintain the focus on the delivery of the vital digital services and transformation that the NHS both needs and deserves.”