The London & South East Health Informatics Specialist Group of the BCS organised a lively and humerous debate, asking the audience to consider the motion: This house believes that real innovation using ICT in healthcare delivery is driven by clinicians rather than informaticians.

Before the speakers were able no put their case for or against the motion a vote was taken – with 18 voting in favour and 4 against the motion.
Simon Dodds, a vascular surgeon and computer scientist, then proposed the motion by describing the charcteristics of an innovator and using his experience (and prizes) to support the case. Ian Hebert countered these arguments by suggesting that clinicians get tunnel vision which limits innovaton & suggesting that good code is needed to enable diffusion of innovation – however being aware of what is possible is key for all. He suggested that C4H is a good example of trying to innovate without clinicians. Mark Outhwaite asked the audience to seriously consider the issues and argued that only clinicans can truely understand the interaction with patients and therefore the innovations that are needed. The final presentation was from Colin Jervis who gave some good examples of poor records and suggested that innovation is not about ideas but about implementation.

The micorphone was then turned over to the audience with varied and very relevant contributions from a range of people, both clinicans and informaticians, to argue various points, before the lead proponents and opponent of the motion summed p.

The final vote was 18 in favour and 9 against the motion.

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