The first quarter of 2021 saw the Digital Health Cooperative Research Centre (DHCRC) focus on strategic improvements under the stewardship of Chief Executive Officer Dr Terry Sweeney, CMG, who joined the organisation in late 2020.

Dr Sweeney brings a wealth of global senior leadership experience in digital health combined with extensive commercial, innovation and entrepreneurial skills.

He was previously Global Managing Director of IBM Watson Health where he led significant partnerships including with The Mayo Clinic and American Medical Association, formed a $1 billion partnership to support China’s Healthy China 2030 national agenda, and worked on a public-private partnership developing an e-health platform for Japan.

DHCRC now has over thirty research projects in delivery, including four new projects which will develop and underpin the adoption and effective use of digital technologies in aged care, mental health, virtual care and community health.

DHCRC plays a critical part of our role in building Australia’s digital health workforce capacity and technological literacy to prevent a digital divide, through its robust industry-centred education program which supports over 50 postgraduate researchers. Thousands of Australia’s digital health learners have also engaged in DHCRC digital health short courses, micro-credentialed courses and free webinars delivering skills and knowledge that can be applied in workplaces immediately.

“We are working towards a major collaboration between government, industry and the digital health research community, to unlock the potential of innovative technologies and data to solve the most pressing healthcare challenges,” Dr Sweeney said.

“We’ve identified opportunities to use technology to shape the future of digital health, working at the intersection of healthcare, big data and tech to help solve some of Australia’s biggest healthcare challenges while at the same time, stimulate the economy and create new jobs,” he said.

This article first appeared in the eHealth Queensland National Digital Health Update for Q1, 2021.