Eilísh Hardiman, Chief Executive, Children’s Healthcare Ireland

Eilísh Hardiman is Chief Executive since 2013 of Children’s Health Ireland (CHI and previously the Children’s Hospital Group). CHI is the body legally established in January 2019 to govern and manage children’s healthcare services in its 4 service locations in Dublin at Crumlin, Temple Street, Tallaght and Connolly Hospital, as a single entity in partnership with multiple academic institutions to provide integrated paediatric healthcare services, education, research and innovation.

Annually, CHI treats and cares for over 334,500 children and adolescents through 4,000 staff. Children are 25% of the Irish population and CHI provides all their national paediatric specialty needs with some on an all-island basis, as well as, all secondary paediatric care for the population in the Greater Dublin Area.

Eilísh has over 30 years acute academic teaching hospital experience, 20 of which at senior corporate management level in several roles, including 3 Chief Executive posts, a Deputy CEO / Chief Operations Officer post and Director of Nursing. She has been directly involved in progressing the transformation and development of paediatric healthcare since 2006, when the policy decision was first made to develop a single national children’s hospital central to an integrated network of paediatric services in Ireland. CHI are client to the new national children’s hospital, a €1.7bn project, the largest capital investment in the state that is currently under construction.

Eilísh has an Executive MBA from Smurfit School of Business and as her professional background is in nursing, has several academic and professional nursing qualifications. She is also a Trustee of the Children’s Health Foundation since 2020.

 

Pat O’Mahony, Chair HIQA, CEO Mapat Management Consultants and former Deputy Secretary General, Department of Health

Pat is Chief Executive at Mapat Management Consultants where he provides strategic management consultancy to selected clients. He is also Executive Chairman of Muir PT, which is planning to provide Proton Therapy services on the island of Ireland, Chairman of the Board of the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) and Chairman of the Board of the Irish Medicines Verification Organisation (IMVO).

Pat previously served as CEO at Clinical Research Development Ireland, the clinical and translational research partnership of the universities in Ireland from 2017 to 2019, Deputy Secretary General and Head of Governance and Performance at the Department of Health in Dublin for 15 months, prior to which he was Chief Executive of the Health Products Regulatory Authority from 2002 to 2015.

Having spent a number of years in private clinical practice and as technical manager in the pharmaceutical industry in Ireland and the UK, Pat worked in public health and was Director of Consumer Protection at the Food Safety Authority of Ireland.

He has previously served on a variety of public and private sector boards including the European Medicines Agency (EMA), where he served as Chairman from 2007 to 2011, the Food Safety Authority of Ireland, the National Patient Safety Advisory Group and was Vice Chair of the International Coalition of Medicines Regulatory Authorities. Pat was appointed Adjunct Professor at UCD in 2017.

Chris Coburn, Chief Innovation Officer, at Mass General Brigham, USA

Chris leads a team of more than 125 people tasked with the worldwide commercial application of the unique capabilities and discoveries of all Mass General Brigham’s 80,000 employees. His unit’s business development responsibilities include investing, company creation, innovation management, industry collaborations, and licensing.

Mass General Brigham comprises16 member institutions that encompass a range of health care organisations. In addition to academic medical centres, these include top-tier specialty hospitals, community hospitals, a rehabilitation network, a health insurance plan, a physician network, a teaching organisation and many locations for urgent and community care.

Under Chris’ leadership, commercialisation revenue exceeds $130 million annually and more than 225 companies have been spun-off from Mass General Brigham in the last decade. Large-scale industry collaborations have been established in areas such as artificial intelligence and drug development. Provider strategy and operational consulting has been delivered to clients in nearly 40 countries. His team also manages a nearly $200 million venture fund.

Prior to joining Mass General Brigham, Chris was the founding director of Cleveland Clinic Innovations and served for 13 years as its executive leader. During his tenure, Cleveland Clinic spun off 57 companies that raised more than $700 million in equity financing. There were none before Chris’ arrival. His team also managed an innovation alliance network in which Cleveland Clinic directly supported technology commercialisation for health care systems throughout the United States.

Mike Burrows, National Coordination Director, AHSN Network, UK

Mike has previously held roles as the Managing Director of the Greater Manchester Academic Health Science Network (AHSN), the Director of the NHS England (Greater Manchester) Area Team and Chief Executive of NHS Greater Manchester. From 2004 until 2011, he was Chief Executive of Salford Teaching Primary Care Trust (PCT). Originally a Doctor of Biochemistry, Mike has worked in the NHS for 34 years now, both in the finance discipline and general management. He has an active interest in the use of evidence-based medicine and is a passionate believer in the benefits of strong ties between the NHS, academia and industry. In this respect he was one of the founding Board members of the Manchester Academic Health Sciences Centre (MAHSC) and under his leadership developed Salford PCT to be one of the leading research active PCTs in the UK.

In his current role Mike has the responsibility for engaging the NHS, academia and industry to generate health and wealth, particularly through the adoption and diffusion of innovation and research output.

Goetz Gerecke, Managing Director and Senior Partner, the Boston Consulting Group, Switzerland

Goetz is BCG’s Global Sector Leader on MedTech Commercial and leads BCG’s MedTech and Sales & Marketing Practices in Switzerland.

He coordinates BCG’s relationship with MedTech Europe, the European trade association representing the medical technology industries, and has partnered with them on various programs including the development of the new MedTech Value Based Procurement Framework. Goetz has led large-scale commercial model transformation programmes for medical device clients in Europe, the US and Asia. He co-authored BCG’s “Milkman Reports” on how to fix the MedTech commercial model based on the insights from three global benchmarking studies and recently launched BCG’s “Milkman Academy” client enablement program.

Goetz holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BSc Honors from the European Business School.

Sonia Neary, CEO and Co-founder, Wellola

Wellola is an Irish digital health software company. With over 17 years’ previous experience working as a physiotherapist in the Irish healthcare system, Sonia is a big believer in leveraging digital technology to support hospital-at-home and self-management care models. She supports Wellola’s mission to offer care-enabling technology that enables clinicians to keep well people well (and treat those that are unwell) in the community where possible, maximising clinical and economic outcomes while optimising patients’ healthcare experiences. Now more than ever, Wellola’s secure telehealth and patient portals are also protecting the healthcare providers on the frontline.

 

John Kelly, Deputy CEO, Tallaght University Hospital

John was appointed to his current role in March 2019, having previously held the role of Chief Operational Officer at the hospital. He is the Executive Lead for Research and Innovation, which has been identified as one of 6 key priority areas in the hospital’s corporate strategy 2019-2024.

John qualified as an Occupational Therapist from Trinity College Dublin in 2000 and worked across a number of clinical roles and moved away from clinical work into project management in 2013. He has a Masters in Healthcare Management from the Royal College of Surgeons and is currently undertaking a Postgraduate Diploma in Healthcare Innovation.

Deirdre Glenn, Head of Lifesciences, Enterprise Ireland

Deirdre has over 20 years extensive experience in enterprise development, innovation and start up creation both within industry and on behalf of the Irish Government. She was appointed Director, Lifesciences & Food Commercialisation and Lifesciences Sector Manager in February 2016 and plays a critical leadership role within Enterprise Ireland. Her dual role involves having responsibility for delivering accelerated export growth through the development of companies within the medtech and pharma/vetpharma technologies sectors and leading the Enterprise Ireland drive to achieve economic impact from Ireland’s market-led research and commercialisation investment to the benefit of Lifesciences companies. The role requires close liaison and interaction with internal and external key stakeholders including Irish industry, Government departments, international customers, representative bodies, healthcare professionals and the academic community. Deirdre’s driving ambition is to help more Irish-owned businesses to achieve business-scale through international growth, so that the associated job creation drives increasing prosperity in towns and villages throughout Ireland.

Prior to Enterprise Ireland, Deirdre held several roles over a 7-year period within Cantab Pharmaceuticals, a biotechnology company in Cambridge, UK. Whilst at Cantab, she completed several in-licensing and out-licensing deals with biopharmaceutical corporations and academic institutions in the US and Europe and played a key role in the identification and acquisition of product opportunities to build the company’s early and late-stage product pipeline.

David Toohey C.Eng, FIEI, MBA, CEO, Syncrophi Systems

David is CEO and a founder of Syncrophi Systems Limited, a company developing the next-generation of medical-grade frontline patient care and clinical informatics solutions. He joined Syncrophi from Alere Inc. (NYSE: ALR) where he was President of International Business Operations and spent 11 years on the corporate executive staff. Prior to Alere, David was VP Operations and Managing Director of Boston Scientific in Galway. He previously held various leadership positions at Bausch & Lomb, Inc., Digital Equipment Corp. and Mars, Inc. He has over 35 years’ experience in international business, the last 25 of which have been in medical devices, the in-vitro diagnostics industry and the eHealth domain. He is an independent Non-Executive Director at Carclo plc (FTSE: CAR) – a global supplier to the medical device, IVD and pharma industries. David is also a board member of Croí, the West of Ireland cardiology and stroke foundation and is also a board member of NIPC, the National Institute for Prevention and Cardiovascular Health. He is a Chartered Engineer, a Fellow of Engineers Ireland and holds an Honours Degree in Electronics System Design (UL), an MBA (Edinburgh) and post-grad qualifications in anatomy and physiology (RCSI) and in manufacturing technology (OU).

 

John O’Dea, Group Chief Executive Officer, Palliare

John has 30 years’ experience in the medical device industry and currently works at surgical device company Palliare which he co-founded in 2018. He previously worked at Medtronic following their acquisition in 2017 of GI Diagnostic company Crospon which he founded in 2006. In 1998 he co-founded Caradyne, an Irish respiratory medical device company, which was acquired by Respironics Inc. in 2004. In the past 35 years he has held R&D management positions in Nellcor Puritan Bennett and engineering positions in Digital Equipment Inc. and in Dataproducts Inc. He is a named author on 18 U.S. Patents.

He holds Bachelor and Master’s Degrees in Mechanical Engineering and a PhD in Electronics Engineering, all from University College Dublin and an MSc in Clinical Research from NUI Galway. He is Chairman of the External Advisory Board of BioInnovate Ireland at NUI Galway. He is a past Chairman of the Board of the Irish Medical Devices Association, and a Past President of Engineers Ireland. In 2016 he was awarded a Doctor of Engineering (honoris causa) by NUI Galway for his contribution to the Irish medical device industry and received the 2016 Outstanding Contribution to Medtech Award from the Irish Medtech Association, IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland. 

Tanya Mulcahy, Interim Director, Health Innovation Hub Ireland (HIHI)

Health Innovation Hub Ireland (HIHI) is a government initiative supported by Enterprise Ireland and the Health Service Executive. The role of HIHI is to support companies to test, validate and commercialise innovative products and services; to support healthcare staff to assess and develop their ideas; and to provide healthcare with access to new technologies that enable better healthcare delivery and improved patient outcomes.

Tanya joined the Health Innovation Hub in December 2013 and has played a pivotal role in the advancement of HIHI from a pilot at University College Cork to a national entity, now with 4 partner locations across the country. She has extensive experience in the public and private sector, across academia, the pharmaceutical sector and in the start-up biotechnology industry in Ireland and in the USA. She has a degree in Biochemistry, a PhD in Cancer Genetics, a Postgraduate Certificate in Clinical Trials and has conducted postdoctoral research Neuropsychiatric Genetics.

HIHI is headquartered in UCC with partner hubs at NUI Galway, Trinity College Dublin and Munster Technological University and to date has supported more than 400 companies with innovative healthcare solutions, conducted more than 90 pilot studies and has assessed more than 390 ideas from healthcare staff.

Martin Curley, Director, Digital Transformation and Open Innovation, HSE

Martin is involved in helping enable the digital transformation of Ireland’s health service. Formerly, he 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 he 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 a number of 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.

Mary Day, Chief Executive, St. James’s Hospital

Mary was appointed in 2020 to the role of Chief Executive in St James’s Hospital. She was previously Chief Executive in Ireland East Hospital Group and in the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital. She has been an Adjunct Associate Professor at the UCD School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems since 2010. Mary’s professional and academic qualifications include a BSc (Hons) in Cancer Nursing and MSc in Health Service Management.

Mary has contributed to the development of lean management for healthcare improvement in setting up the Lean Academy in the Mater Hospital and further developing the Lean Improvement Programme across the Ireland East Hospital Group to implement systemic improvements across the Group and create a sustainable infrastructure for expanding internal capacity and capability to deliver transformational change. She is a passionate advocate for lean improvement to deliver sustainable results, empower and motivate staff, breakdown silos and release time to improve patient care and looks forwards to developing the Transformation Office for Lean Management in St James’ Hospital.

Mary is also a strong advocate for the delivery of an integrated Academic Health Sciences Centre and is keen to ensure academic, innovation and research is embedded in service delivery. The development of the Academic Health Science model as a high-performance vehicle for better health, and the foundations reflects significant international experience demonstrating that the integration of education, innovation and research in an Academic Health Science Centre (AHSC) model improves both patient care and drives the knowledge economy. Her strategic ambition for St James’s Hospital Campus is to evolve into an Integrated Academic Health Science Campus which will deliver improved healthcare outcomes for patients and create the most dynamic healthcare campus nationally and pan Europe.

Frank Keane, CEO, Vitalograph Group

Frank is the CEO of the Vitalograph group, having joined in 2004 as the General Manager of the Ennis site. Vitalograph was formed in 1963 and designs, manufactures and supplies Class II cardiopulmonary and respiratory diagnostic medical devices and accessories to primary, secondary and tertiary care as well as equipment, services and software systems for clinical drug trials globally and has completed over 200 trials to date. The company employs 350 globally and 160 in Ennis.

Previous to this Frank worked with Parthus Technologies (2001-2004) as the VP of Product Marketing and prior to that worked with Artesyn Technologies (1995-2001), a US multinational, as Global Director of Product Marketing and R&D Manager. Previous roles were in R&D and R&D management in several companies from start-ups to multinationals, including Intepro and Burr-Brown.  Frank has a B.Eng (Electronics) from UL (1986) as well as an M.Sc (Mgmt.) from TCD (2003).

Dr Brendan Boland, CEO, Loci Orthopaedics and former Fellow, Bioinnovate

Brendan graduated with honours from University College Dublin Medical School in 2006. He went on to gain his higher specialist qualifications from the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland and the Irish College of General Practitioners. Brendan practiced as a clinician for over 6 years. In 2013, he was a Fellow on the BioInnovate programme from which he gained a Masters in BioInnovation, and the skills to identify unmet clinical needs, invent a solution for such needs, and implement those solutions on a pathway to market.

In 2017, Brendan co-founded Loci Orthopaedics with Gerry Clarke, another BioInnovate Fellow. The company has raised over €6 million in funding to date. Loci Orthopaedics is developing innovative orthopaedic products to meet unmet clinical needs in the rapidly growing sector of orthopaedics extremities. The company has its first product in clinical trials and has an extensive pipeline of new products in development.

Jim Dowdall, Strategic Advisor and former Managing Director, Irish Life Health 

Jim has 18 years’ experience in leading various health insurance companies in Ireland. He started with VIVAS Health, a new entrant back in 2003 and, following its acquisition by Aviva in 2008, Jim held the positions of Managing Director of Aviva Health and then CEO of Aviva Ireland. In 2012 he co-founded and was CEO of GloHealth, another green-field entrant to the health insurance market.
 
Following the acquisition and merger of both GloHealth and Aviva Health by Irish Life Group in 2016, Jim became Managing Director of the newly formed Irish Life Health, a position he held until he stepped back from this role in January of this year. Jim is currently a part-time strategic advisor to, and board member of Irish Life Health, a wholly owned subsidiary of Irish Life Group and part of the Great West LifeCo company.
 
With an annual spend on health care in excess of €2bn, health insurers are a critical stakeholder in the Irish health system, providing access to health care to almost 50% of the population. Jim has been an active advocate for the role of private health insurance and private health care as key elements of the overall Irish health system, recognising the imperative to deliver a more effective overall health system through greater collaboration, enhanced competition and a customer focused transformation of existing practices.

 

 

David Clancy, Chief Technology Officer, Serosep Ireland Ltd.

David has for the past 10 years worked as Chief Technology Officer and Molecular Diagnostics Division Manager for Serosep Ireland and as Director of Serosep UK. During this time, Serosep, an indigenous Irish SME which operates in the invitro diagnostic clinical market, has developed and successfully commercialised an innovative product portfolio for infectious diseases that is in routine daily use in clinical laboratories worldwide. A part of this product portfolio has been brought though the FDA 510K process to enable US market access. Previously, David worked for 12 years as a Specialist Medical Scientist in molecular diagnostics with the HSE in the areas of immunogenetics and clinical microbiology.

 

 

 

 

Alan Brace, Director of Finance, Health and Social Services Group, Welsh Government

Alan was born in the Rhondda Valley and now lives in Coity with his wife and three children.
He joined the NHS as a National Finance Management Trainee and apart from two years in Local Government has spent his entire career in NHS Wales. Alan has been both a Finance Director and a Chief Executive Officer in a number of health bodies in Wales. In 2016 he was appointed as the Director of Finance of the Health and Social Services Group in the Welsh Government.
This is the largest group in Welsh Government covering both the strategic planning and delivery of all health and social care in Wales and in this role Alan works closely with the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care as well as health boards in Wales. Alan is also the Professional Head of Finance for all NHS Wales.
Alan has benefited from extended study leave in Harvard Business School where he studied both General Management and Leadership as well as Value Measurement in Health Care. He also studied in Stanford Business School in California studying Not-for-Profit Leadership.
In September 2018 he was made an Honorary Professor in Swansea University School of Management.

Michelle Sullivan, Senior Manager HEMA, UK & Ireland, Boston Scientific

Michelle has had a diverse career in pharmaceutical and medical devices, first working in the industry in 1990. As a lateral thinker and strategist, her employers, previously Covidien/Medtronic, currently Boston Scientific, have often created roles to capitalise on her knowledge and skills, helping them to respond to the prevailing market conditions.

A graduate biologist with a long-standing career in sales, management, marketing, and market development, Michelle chose to re-train in Health Economics at York University, adding the value ‘spectacles’ and ‘hearing-aids’ she employs today when working with Boston Scientific, their customers, and various industry bodies.

She sits on the Board of HealthTech Ireland, leading the Market Access workstream. Her current understanding of COVID and its implications has led to an interested following on Linked-In, and a focus on how we can best work and show unique value to solve the challenges created by the new COVID world that is upon us.