update Queensland Health has fired its chief information officer Paul Summergreene, following reports in June that he was being investigated over expense claims.
Former Qld Health CIO Paul Summergreene (Credit: Association and Communications Events)
"His contract has been terminated," a spokesperson for the department told ZDNet.com.au this afternoon.
The Courier-Mail newspaper had reported on 7 June this year that state investigators were examining Summergreene's expenses, although at the time Queensland Health had declined to comment on the specifics of the matter.
Summergreene had only been in the CIO role since the closing months of last year. Before taking up the health position he had been Queensland Transport's CIO for a number of years, where he had had a key role in the development of the state's project to replace its antiquated drivers' licence cards with modern smartcards.
In response to a question on whether Summergreene was sacked due to findings from any investigation, the department's director general Michael Reid said the department wanted a change in leadership direction in its information services division. Summergreene's firing came "as a result" of that decision, Reid said.
Dr Richard Ashby had been appointed to the CIO role in an acting capacity from today following Summergreene's dismissal.
Qld Health CIO Dr Richard Ashby (Credit: Queensland Health)
Reid said in a statement that Ashby has previously held leadership roles in both emergency medicine and medical administration in the department, serving in several hospitals.
"He has major interests and expertise in clinical and administrative information systems," the director-general said.
The news comes at a critical time for Queensland Health's technology support operation. The previous CIO, Sabrina Walsh, had been successful in obtaining funding of about AU$650 million over the next four years for major e-health initiatives.
Reid said the government had made a major investment commitment to the development, evaluation and implementation of information systems to support its operations.
"I am determined that this investment will deliver state of the art clinical information systems across Queensland Health," he said. "I want to ensure that the information system needs of clinicians are a leading consideration in whatever we adopt or develop in implementing our e-health strategy."
The Australian Financial Review reported on the 8th of August that Electronic Data Systems and PricewaterhouseCoopers had won key roles in supporting the statewide e-health strategy. Although when ZDNet.com.au contacted Summergreene at the time he said there was no dollar value assigned to the deals as the value would simply be based on the work assigned.
years for major e-health initiatives.