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NHS Digital project manager clinches top honour at Women in IT awards

2 February 2018

NHS Digital Senior Project Manager Marta Raper has won the Editor's Choice category at the Women in IT Awards held in London.

 In four years Marta's career has taken her from business support officer to working on the biggest ever public sector technology contract to be brought back in-house.

Marta clinched the title at the ceremony held on Wednesday, January 31,after beating off competition from nine other contestants in this category in which the judges were looking for someone exceptional in the industry.

They believed Marta had demonstrated strong leadership in managing several critical and complex projects which ultimately brought huge benefits to patients and clinicians as well as saved money for the NHS.

Marta joined NHS Digital in 2008 as a business support officer for the Chief Technology Officer before moving to supporting operational delivery.

Marta was keen to develop her career and stepped forward for the challenge of working to bring the NHS Spine, which was managed externally, back in-house. 

The NHS Spine is the 'backbone' of all national NHS systems and joins together over 23,000 healthcare IT systems in 20,500 organisations.

It allows information to be shared securely through national services such as the Electronic Prescription Service, the Summary Care Record and the e-Referral service.

Once brought back in-house, Marta went on to project manage the integration of demographic health and social care data into Spine which enabled professionals in these fields to verify patients' NHS numbers and access the crucial information needed to support their care.

Andrew Meyer, Director of the Digital Delivery Centre of which Spine is now a part, said: "The work Marta led on the Spine 2 programme was innovative and highly successful. It included managing the transfer of the data previously held externally back to NHS Digital.

"Her and the team's efforts brought about a cultural change within the organisation as well as saving the NHS £21m in its first year."

The next stage of the project brought data in-house from the Data Transfer Service which managed secure messaging between laboratories, GPs and hospitals. The aim of the service was to deliver test results securely. The system was nearing the end of its contract with BT and Marta was instrumental in successfully project managing a new in-house system called MESH (Messaging Exchange for Social Care and Health). She successfully migrated 7,000 organisations onto MESH in six months.

Marta said: "I'm delighted to have won an award for the work I've done in recent years. NHS Digital has given me the opportunity to make a real difference to the organisation and to patients. I still feel there is so much to achieve and I look forward to further exciting challenges ahead in my career."

A second NHS Digital employee, Elizabeth Hill, was nominated for Graduate of the Year. Elizabeth joined NHS Digital as a business analyst on the NHS Spine and has since worked as a scrum master for the replacement of the Secondary Uses Service which was the single repository for healthcare data in England and supported the NHS in the delivery of healthcare services. She now works in the Digital Delivery Centre.

Elizabeth has also worked as an ambassador for the NHS Digital graduate programme and has represented the organisation at the HERD Digital Careers Fair and the Leeds Digital Festival. 

Eve Roodhouse, Director of Implementation and the Digital Environment and Chair of the Women's Network, said: "I am extremely proud that our colleagues are receiving well-deserved recognition in the Women in IT awards.

"We work hard to ensure that women are supported to achieve at NHS Digital and it speaks volumes of the talent we have in our organisation."

ENDS


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Notes to editors 

 NHS Digital is the national information and technology partner of the health and care system.  Our team of information analysis, technology and project management experts create, deliver and manage the crucial digital systems, services, products and standards upon which health and care professionals depend.  

For media enquiries please contact media@nhsdigital.nhs.net or telephone 0300 30 33 888.