NHS IT chief to step down

Head of the National Programme for IT, Richard Granger, will leave his post later this year, the NHS has revealed

The head of the controversial £12bn NHS IT modernisation project, the National Programme for IT, is to leave his post.

Richard Granger will resign as chief executive of Connecting for Health (CfH), the part of the NHS which runs the National Programme for IT (NPfIT), "during the latter part of this year", CfH said on Saturday.

NPfIT has been dogged by ongoing problems with suppliers and spiralling costs.

CfH said Granger will return to work "primarily" in the private sector during 2008 and is currently considering "several significant approaches".

Granger said in a statement: "My decision should be seen in the context of the changing role of the centre of the NHS and the fact that, when I took on this challenge, I said I would give this job five years. I passionately believe that the programme will deliver ever greater levels of benefit to patients over the coming years. There remain a number of challenges ahead but I firmly believe that the leadership of the programme by Lord Hunt, David Nicholson and my colleagues within CfH will ensure these hurdles are overcome."

No successor has been announced.