HSE’s head of digital transformation Martin Curley resigns

16 Jan 2023

Martin Curley pictured at Open Innovation 2.0 in the Convention Centre Dublin in 2014. Image: Conor McCabe Photography

Curley compared his task to climbing Mount Everest in bad weather and referenced difficulties such as ‘supply chain and funding blockages’.

The HSE’s head of digital transformation has resigned with immediate effect, hinting at difficulties in achieving the role’s goals.

Martin Curley compared his task to climbing Mount Everest in bad weather, citing difficulties such as “supply chain and funding blockages”. He announced his resignation from the role of digital transformation and open innovation director on LinkedIn today (16 January).

“We have called off this particular ascent on Everest,” Curley said. “We could still succeed but there would be too many casualties, including me.”

“Therefore as part of a well thought out, broader and evolving plan I resigned yesterday with immediate effect from the Health Service Executive.”

Curley joined the HSE in 2018 to assist the service in adopting new digital technologies to transform Irish healthcare. During his time in the role, the HSE launched nine digital health labs across Ireland to address various issues such as Covid-19 and using AI in healthcare.

In 2020, the HSE also partnered with medtech start-up Nua Solutions to let GPs provide virtual consultations and avoid physical contact during the Covid-19 pandemic.

In 2021, Curley’s digital transformation team partnered with Adapt, the Science Foundation Ireland research centre for AI-driven digital content technology, to find ways to leverage technology in the healthcare sector.

At the time, Curley said these types of partnerships could help place Ireland as “the European leader in digital health by 2026”.

Prior to working with the HSE, Curley had spent a year with Mastercard and nearly 16 years working for Intel. In 2015, he was named one of three European CTOs of the year for his work with the company, including spearheading the creation of Intel Labs Europe.

Speaking on his resignation today, Curley said, “We have found a more promising route, with a much more well situated and welcoming base camp”, continuing the Everest comparison.

“We have a great group of climbers and committed expedition sponsors and a great supply chain,” Curley said. “We can move fast and be mobile. Success is not guaranteed but we are optimistic.”

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic