In April 2019, Kettering General Hospital (KGH) commenced on an ambitious journey to be the most digital hospital in England by July 2023. One component of this journey is the aim to decommission all on-site data centres, and move to the cloud, particularly in the light of our forthcoming rebuild as part of the HIP2 programme in the next 3–5 years. Achieving this move is a multi-year project, so putting steps in place to achieve this now is critical.

As we begin to formulate the cloud-first policy/strategy for KGH, I wanted to see what others in the NHS were doing…

TL;DR: Appreciating the sharing from the NHS family. Standing down daily covid group reporting.

[week ending 14/05/2021]

Who did you talk to outside of your organisation? Had a brief catch up about the Midlands Digital Health Skills Development Network that I talked about last time. Now we’ve officially launched, it is a case of making sure all folk in the Midlands know about it. Was a bit embarrassed later in the week to get an email to say noone in Kettering had signed up… oops.

Mary, Dave and I had a meeting with a major UK supplier. We don’t do…

TL;DR: NGH EPR Business Case Approved. Launching the Midlands Digital Health Skills Network. Failing to prepare.

[week ending 30/04/2021]

Who did you talk to outside of your organisation? I was humbled to be asked to join a panel for an NHS Providers podcast recording talking about diversity and inclusion. Not sure when it gets released, so I’ll mention more about it then. I was quite nervous before it started as this is a podcast I listen to regularly and my fellow panelists were people I admire and wondered if I had anything to add to the conversation. …

TL;DR: Jedi partial booking. Diversity and inclusion as an essential leadership competency

[week ending 23/04/2021]

Who did you talk to outside of your organisation? Jo, Bola, Josh and I joined a call with NHS Digital and NHSX to talk about progress in making the best use of the Digital Aspirant seed funding NGH recieved last year. We talked about the next steps towards applying for the larger sums of money this year. There’s still quite a few unknowns in the process, but the first step is getting it approved by our Board next week.

A really frustrating call with a…

TL;DR: Weeknotes saves the week again. NGH EPR Business Case on the runway.

[week ending 16/04/2021]

Who did you talk to outside of your organisation? I had an introductory chat with David, Executive Director for Adults, Communities and Wellbeing (DASS) at the newly created North Northamptonshire Council. We talked about the Northamptonshire Care Record, information and a shared hero worship of the late Dame Caldicott.

I met the candidates interviewing for the NGH Digital Director role. The process involved a stakeholder panel, immediately followed by preparation for a presentation exercise and then straight into the interview. It was a pretty…

TL;DR: Using the Thinking Environment in 1–2–1s. Spending more time in ICS-land.

[week ending 09/04/2021]

Who did you talk to outside of your organisation? I joined the newly established Elective Care Board which is a cross-system group which is coordinating the elective reset across Northants.

I also joined a system group looking at the new NHS England planning guidance and our response to it.

What would you have liked to do more of? We had some excellent journey mapping work done in relation to complex discharges. The output is really rich, and I’ve not really had the chance to get…

I’ve done this for a few years now. At the end of 2020, I set out some personal goals for 2021. It’s now time to review progress at Q1.

TL;DR: Reasonable start to the year, but don’t ask about my weight.

>> Read 50 books. On target, 16 books read so far. This year I also added some sub-targets

  • Read three Victorian classics. On target — read a Hardy in Jan.
  • Read three books to educate myself more about race. On target — read White Fragility in Feb.
  • Finish the long-neglected Biography of Ceasar — no progress.

>> Summarise 100%…

TL;DR: Group Digital Strategy is Go — Now the delivery! The importance of feedback.

[week ending 02/04/2021]

Early publish this week due to the Easter Bank Holiday weekend. Happy Easter!

Who did you talk to outside of your organisation? This week we finished off the shortlisting interviews for the NGH Digital Director post.

I joined another meeting of a few good souls seeking to establish a Midlands Digital Health Skills Development Network. This is really taking shape now and Mike and I will seek to do some of the launch stuff with Midlands colleagues in the next few weeks. …

TL;DR: Group Digital Strategy approved at NGH Board. Showcasing li’l ‘ol Kettering in a Making Data Count Workshop. Meeting Matthew Gould.

[week ending 26/03/2021]

Who did you talk to outside of your organisation? A few of us met Matthew Gould, CEO of NHSX this week. He joined with Sonia Patel, the NHSX CIO. We pulled out the big guns and had Simon, our Group CEO, The Trusts’ Chair and Alice the NED who chairs the Group Digital Hospital Committee. We talked about what we’d done so far as a hospital group, particuarly highlighting the value the KGH board put on…

Having just reviewed a number of applications for a senior position, I was astonished at the poor quality of a good number of them. On the one hand, it makes my life easy to reject your application at the shortlisting phase, but I don’t want it to be easy. I could be missing out on a brilliant hire. Your job is to make the life of the shortlisters hard and make it difficult for us to discard your application. So I’m writing these tips to benefit us both.

NB: This advice is related to Digital roles, but I’m pretty sure…

Andy Callow

Husband. Dad to 3 smashing lads. Cub Leader. MAMIL. Group CDIO for Northampton and Kettering Hospitals. Ex NHS Digital. Views own. Always learning.

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