John Thornbury, Director of IT at Dudley Group of Hospitals foundation Trust in the Midlands has sadly passed away. Thornbury has been leading transformation at the Dudley trust since 2012 and this year joined the CIO 100 listing of transformative CIOs, published by this title.

Thornbury began his career in pharmaceuticals as a microbiology researcher before becoming an IT leader. Prior to joining the Dudley Group of Hospitals foundation Trust Thornbury was Director of ICT for the nearby Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust for eight years and had been head of information for the Walsall Primary Care Trust.

As well as his CIO 100 accolade, Thornbury was a previous winner of the EHI Healthcare IT Champion of the Year award in 2010. EHI broke the news of Thornbury’s sad passing, director of EHI Linda Davidson said of the CIO: “I first encountered John when he was working in Walsall and recognised that he was a leader committed not only to advancing healthcare with the use of information technology, but also to communicating his ideas and views to a wider audience.”

At the Dudley Group of Hospitals foundation Trust Thornbury managed an IT and transformation budget of £5 million and described his transformation approach as:

“Involved in multiple approaches to transformation across NHS in previous roles, however many organisations in the NHS do not get the role IT plays and too involved in operational issues to see further.”

Thornbury added that he was considering the opportunities offered by mobile, electronic records, CRM, WiFi, RFID and e-prescription as future transformation strategies for the NHS trust.

CIO UK is saddened to hear of Thornbury’s untimely passing. The NHS, more than at any time in its past, needs transformative CIOs to lead efficiencies and benefits from technology as well as partnerships with the commercial and public sector worlds.

You can read John Thornbury's CIO 100 submission here.