Liz Ashall-Payne, founder and CEO, ORCHA (Organisation for the Review of Care and Health Applications), UK

ORCHA is the world’s leading provider of digital health accreditation and distribution services. A trained Speech and Language Therapist for almost 20 years, Liz led NHS transformation programmes helping to unlock the power of digital across the UK and Europe.

In 2015 Liz founded ORCHA, attracting investment from Sir Terry Leahy and Bill Currie. The organisation has grown exponentially now providing digital health assessment and distribution services in 11 countries and in the UK to organisations in 50% of NHS regions.

ORCHA has won numerous awards, whilst Liz has been selected as a Tech Trailblazer by the BIMA 100, picked as a Healthcare IT Leader by the HIMSS Future 50, named Entrepreneur of the Year by the British Chamber of Commerce and has featured within the LDC top 50.

She was appointed an NHS England NIA fellow, is a coach for the NHS England Clinical Entrepreneur programme, a member of the OCS Advisory Board, the Tech UK Health and Social Care Council and is the Associate Vice Chair for Standards for the British Computing Society.

Maria João Jacinto, Executive Director of Patient Innovation and researcher, Nova School of Business and Economics, Portugal

Patient Innovation is a non-profit, global, free online platform for patients/caregivers of any disease to share the solutions they have developed. Maria João’s research focuses on ‘Healthcare Innovation and Entrepreneurship for Impact: Creating a Resilient, Safe and Crowd-based Innovation System’. She has previously worked as bio nanotechnology R&D lead for Biotrend and as pos-doc researcher at Universidade Católica Portuguesa. She received her Ph.D. degree in Bioengineering framed in MIT Portugal programme and her MSc in Biological Engineering from Instituto Superior Técnico.

Maria João had different international collaboration and research experiences as her master thesis in University of Ghent, in European bioengineering research projects, part of her PhD thesis in University of Houston, Texas, USA, and as Patient Innovation Bootcamp programme director. Her ‘hands-on’ experience on applied healthcare science provided her the opportunity to contribute in several teaching modules in different schools, either as teaching assistant, invited lecture or responsible teacher.

Lorraine Smyth, MSc, IIPMM, e-Enabler, Scheduled Care Transformation│Office of the National Director – Change and Innovation Acute Strategy, HSE

Lorraine has over 20 years’ experience in the Health Service Executive across several roles including Digital Health change and innovation, Human Resources and Logistics. She has managed numerous national projects in the Digital Transformation team and was co-founder of the HSE Digital Academy Forum. Lorraine was COVID-19 Laboratories Logistics Lead during the pandemic and now works with the HSE Change and Innovation team in Acute Strategy.

She was the winner of the “Women in Tech Awards – Innovator of the Year” award and” Digital Transformation Leader of the year” award in 2021. Lorraine recently completed her MSc. In Digital Transformation and was awarded “Student Project of the Year” at the Irish Healthcare Awards in 2021 for her project in Digital Healthcare “Remote monitoring of Covid -19 patients”.

Andy Bleaden, Community Director, ECHAlliance

Andy has had a long career in both funding and social care going back over 25 years and has been recently working in Greater Manchester at Stockport where he specialised in Adult Social Care, Robotics, Telehealth and Telemedicine, Regeneration and Dementia. He also formed alliances with pan European groups most recently with the EIP-AHA, Coral and Covenant for Demographic Change.

In addition, Andy has been working as an External Expert for the European Commission since 2013 and also with the European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT) on the new Health KIC and working for the new Urban Innovation Actions as an expert.

He brings a wealth of experience and skills in securing and management of strategic external funding, procurement, innovation funding and forming and development large and complex partnerships across Europe.

Shona D’Arcy, Founder, Kids Speech Labs

Shona has been working in Digital Health for over 15 years from ideation and prototyping to clinical validation and regulatory approval. She has a PhD in speech recognition technology and has combined both her areas of expertise to solve the problem of waiting lists for speech and language therapy.

Shona has experience in digital health across a range of clinical applications: remote cognitive health assessments, smart inhalers and neuromodulation treatment for tinnitus. Shona has always focused on the patient’s experience and how technology will impact their lives. At Kids Speech Labs Shona and her team are delivering evidence based, remote models of care that will re-imagine how we think about speech and language therapy.

Dr Fiona Kiernan, founder and CEO, Zeumed

Zeumed is a digital health start-up which designs precision costing models using data from electronic health records. Along with her medical degree from University College Dublin, she holds a master’s in health economics, Policy & Management from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and a PhD in Economics from UCD. A unique hybrid of an economist and clinician, she practised medicine for 16 years, including 7 years as a consultant in intensive care medicine in Beaumont Hospital, and has developed a pioneering funding model for high-cost ICU patients. She spent 5 years as a board member of the State Board of the Health Insurance Authority which regulates the health insurance industry.

Her interest is in designing tools which provide hospitals with detailed economic and financial information in real time, allowing them to analyse and reduce their costs without negatively affecting the quality of patient care.

Dr Barbara Foley, Health Information Manager, Health Information & Quality Authority (HIQA) 

In her role in the Health Information team in HIQA since 2009, Barbara has led on key programmes of work in relation to health information in Ireland, in areas such as national data collections, information governance, data quality and secondary use of health information. In the past number of years, she has led on the development of information management standards and a suite of guidance documents to support national data collections and established a review programme to assess compliance with the information management standards.

Barbara has been a member of numerous national committees and groups in relation to health information and currently is the HIQA representative on the HSE National Data Dictionary governance group, the Department of Health/CSO health data liaison group, the DASSL Stakeholder group, and committees in relation to the EU TEHDAS project.

Prior to joining HIQA, she worked in research and epidemiology roles in the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) and the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC).

Barbara holds a PhD in molecular virology, a postgraduate qualification in epidemiology, and a professional qualification in governance.

Ruth Bailey, co-founder and CEO, VIGO Health

Currently on the journey of start-up number four, Ruth is co-founder and CEO of VIGO Health – a digital health and wellbeing start-up focused on providing a new type of health insurance cover to under 35-year-olds.  Focusing heavily on digital healthcare and fast access to everyday care, Ruth developed the concept, secured investment, managed the platform build, hired the team and successfully launched the new brand to market all during a pandemic doing this 100% remotely. Ruth is CEO and is also a member of the VIGO Health board of directors. 

Her previous positions include being a founding member of GloHealth, a health insurance provider that launched in 2012 with responsibility for sales, marketing and product development. GloHealth was subsequently sold to Irish Life in 2016.  Prior to this, Ruth worked as Head of Marketing in Aviva Health after Aviva acquired VIVAS Health, another challenger start-up business she was part of.

Ruth started her entrepreneurial journey by opening an accessories boutique in Dublin city centre straight after graduating from a degree in Marketing in 2002.

She holds a master’s degree in Strategic Management, a degree in Marketing, an Executive Diploma in Finance, and an Executive Diploma in Strategic Digital Marketing all from Technology University Dublin. Ruth is also a qualified financial advisor and a certified insurance practitioner.

Martin Curley, Director of the Digital Transformation and Open Innovation, the Health Service Executive

Martin is helping enable the digital transformation of Ireland’s health service. Previously he was Martin was Chief Information Officer (CIO) at the HSE. Prior to joining the HSE Martin was Senior Vice President and group head for Global Digital Practice at Mastercard. Previously Martin was vice president at Intel Corporation and Director/GM of Intel Labs Europe, Intel’s network of more than 50 research labs which he helped grow across the European region. He also served as a senior principal engineer at Intel Labs Europe leading Intel’s research and innovation engagement with the European Commission and the broader European Union research ecosystem.  Prior to this Curley was Global Director of IT Innovation and Director of IT Strategy and Technology at Intel. Earlier in his Intel career, he held several senior positions for Intel in the United States and Europe. He also worked in research and management positions at GE in Ireland and Philips in the Netherlands.

Martin has a bachelor’s degree in electronic engineering and a master’s degree in business studies, both from University College Dublin, Ireland. He received his Ph.D. in information systems from the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. Curley is the author of eight books on technology management for value, innovation and entrepreneurship. He is a Member of the Royal Irish Academy, fellow of the Institution of Engineers of Ireland, the British Computer Society and the Irish Computer Society. Martin is co-founder of the Innovation Value Institute at Maynooth University, a unique industry-academia collaboration driving research and development of advanced IT and Digital maturity frameworks. He was previously a visiting scholar at MIT Sloan Centre for Information Systems Research and a visiting research fellow at the CERN Open Lab in Geneva. He was the inaugural winner of the Engineers Ireland Innovation engineer of the year in 2006 and was jointly awarded European Chief Technology Officer of the year for 2015-2016.

Bridget Kane, Docent, Associate Professor in Information Systems at Karlstad University Business School, Sweden

Bridget is Associate Professor in Information Systems at Karlstad University Sweden. Her research area is in Computer Supported Collaborative Work (CSCW) and Human Computer Interaction (HCI) in healthcare. She has a special interest in the design of work systems that will improve quality and safety in healthcare, while making health services more effective and efficient.

Her PhD in Computer Science (TCD, 2008) was awarded on an analysis of multidisciplinary medical team meetings and the use of ICT. In the past Bridget worked as a Chief Medical Scientist (specialising in Cell Pathology) and Laboratory Information System Manager. She holds an M.Sc. Management (Organisation Behaviour), and M.Sc. (Health Informatics). She is a Registered Medical Scientist with CORU (Ireland) with qualifications FIBMS, CMIAC, FACSLM and CSci.
Bridget’s current research in the NORDeHealth project ( examines patient accessible electronic health records (PAEHR) in Scandinavia. In the past she worked on the SIREN HRB Project focusing on the provision of, and equity of access to, emergency services in Ireland. Issues surrounding more efficient record keeping and tools to enhance collaboration and communication are among her research projects.

Bridget has taught “HCI in Healthcare” to MSc students in Health Informatics at Trinity College. As well as lecturing on a variety of subject areas from time to time, she is an associate lecturer (online) for DCU Business School.
Bridget is a member of the Editorial Board of the International Journal of Medical Informatics (Elsevier) and is also an Associate Editor to the Journal of Behaviour and Information Technology (Taylor & Francis).

Eileen Byrne, Managing Director, Clanwilliam Health

Eileen has been a part of the Clanwilliam Group story from the very beginning. She joined System Solutions in 1995, beginning her career as the receptionist for the company. Over the years she has consistently challenged herself to develop by always displaying hunger personally and professionally for more responsibility, knowledge and learnings. Eileen believes strongly that opportunity and challenges go hand-in-hand and both have always been readily available to her in Clanwilliam Group. From her leadership position she now enjoys challenging her employees to constantly exceed customer expectations in every area from product development to customer support while also ensuring development opportunities are readily available. Eileen’s career has progressed in tandem with the growth of Clanwilliam Group. In September 2017 she was appointed Managing Director of Clanwilliam Health, having worked in several Customer Service and M&A roles throughout her career and was also recently tasked with leading the Clanwilliam Health Division of the Group.

Linda Vernon, Acting Digital Culture and Transformation Clinical Lead, Lancashire & South Cumbria Integrated Care Board, NHS

A University College Dublin graduate and Advanced Physiotherapy Practitioner by background, Linda is interim Digital Culture and Transformation Clinical Lead at Lancashire & South Cumbria Integrated Care Board which supports the health, wellbeing & care of a population of 1.8 million people in the North West of England.
Passionate about empowering individuals and communities and the principles of user-centred design and co-production, Linda leads the digital work programmes around social prescribing, supported self-management, and digital inclusion across Lancashire & South Cumbria. She also oversees Population Health Management, Person-Held Record and EPaCCS (End of Life and Palliative Care Coordination System) programmes and provides clinical leadership to the wider digital portfolio.
Linda enjoys climbing fells in the Lake District, playing guitar, ukulele and singing, and believes the health of the planet and her inhabitants are mutually dependant.

David McGarry, Access Partner Value Based Healthcare, Roche Products (Limited) Ireland

David is part of the Access team at Roche. He has a degree in Computer Science from Griffith College Dublin, a master’s in management from UCD Smurfit School of Business and a Value in Health Measurement Certificate from Harvard Executive Education.
David has worked for Roche for over two years leading Value Based Healthcare (VBHC) initiatives across many disease areas including Lung cancer and Ophthalmology. Before that he worked in the Medical Division in VHI.
In his current role David works with local, global, and across-country teams to design, shape and implement healthcare solutions that make Value Based Healthcare a reality for patients in Ireland.
Value Based healthcare is a patient-centered approach that rewards and focuses on improving outcomes that matter most to patients in relation to the cost of care. VBHC brings value for all healthcare system stakeholders, and it presents a unique opportunity for industry to strengthen collaborations with healthcare systems around a joint vision of improving patient outcomes and system efficiency.
David is married with three children and lives in Dublin, enjoys DIY projects, rugby and family time.

Raphael Jaffrezic, Chief Information Officer, Galway Clinic 

The Galway Clinic is a member of the Blackrock Healthcare Group. Raphael holds a masters in IT Engineering and Business Management and has been involved in healthcare transformation through IT his whole career, starting from a technical role as an IT Engineer then progressing to an executive position.During his career Raphael led a number of innovation projects both clinical and operational, which created process and patient safety improvements throughout the organisation. The Galway Clinic was the first hospital in Ireland and the UK to reach HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society) Stage 6, a prestigious award on the utilisation of healthcare informatics to improve patient care through digitisation.Raphael is dedicated and passionate in using information technology as a strategic driver to better the delivery of care and support clinicians. He is also a black belt in Lean Six Sigma.

Dr Seemit Dhage, Head of Healthcare EMEA , ServiceNow

Dr Seemit Dhage is a Medical Doctor and has worked in clinical practice in the NHS UK, Seemit has spent past 15 years in the Healthcare technology industry. Seemit brings with him expertise around Integrated Care, Medical Devices, Managed Services, Artificial Intelligence, Healthcare Informatics and Transformation through Digital Health Platforms