Former CEO of Portuguese hospital gives international view on digital maturity

The former chief executive officer of a Portuguese hospital has offered the Digital Health Rewired Leadership Summit an international perspective on achieving digital maturity.

Speaking today in London, Professor Vasco Antunes Pereira – who served as chief executive at Hospital de Cascais from 2014 to 2018 – spoke about his experiences of being part of a team which led the first HIMMS level 7 hospital in Portugal.

He said: “It is not about the technology, it is technology being an enabler. How do we use technology to drive up quality and patient safety?”

Professor Antunes – who is now CEO of Portuguese private healthcare company Lusíadas Saúde – also emphasised the importance of staff engagement in digital success.

That included enabling and encouraging staff to interact with vendors, and say: “This is my problem, do you have a solution?”

He added: “It is about bringing the two silos together and bridging the gap.”

Professor Antunes spoke too of the importance of supporting staff more generally, arguing there needed to be “human initiatives”.

While he was at Hospital de Cascais, Professor Antunes said there was a happiness committee which focused on the wellbeing of staff.

The former corporate laywer also championed proactive change management and horizon scanning.

Professor Antunes added: “We had to look at where are you going next; how is our organisation going to be prepared for the next generation?”

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