In case you’ve been busy like me, this week Susannah Fox was named as the new CTO of HHS. She’s the first woman to be appointed to this position and is following in the footsteps of Todd Park (who later became the US CTO) and Bryan Sivak.
The HHS CTO position was started in 2009 and so it’s a relatively new position, but I think it’s exciting that HHS would choose Susannah Fox for this position. Fox has worked as the associate director of the Pew Research Center and as the entrepreneur in residence at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
Those of us on social media know @SusannahFox very well since she was very active on Twitter and often joined in on various healthcare IT discussions that were happening online. Plus, Susannah Fox was a regular speaker at healthcare IT events.
What I love most about the prospect of Susannah Fox being involved at HHS is that she’s a total health data geek. I say that with the utmost respect and admiration. In fact, I don’t throw compliments like that out easily. She’s a true data geek that’s been diving into healthcare data for a long time. I think that’s going to be a very valuable quality in her new role at HHS.
Maybe I’m wrong, but I think that one of HHS’ major roles should be around using data to improve healthcare in the US. I think that’s the potential opportunity for them and one that they haven’t done a great job leveraging to date. I’m hopeful that Susannah Fox will be able to help in that regard.
Think about all the powerful women at the head of HHS: Sylvia Burwell, Karen DeSalvo, and now Susannah Fox (and I’m sure there are many more that I don’t know as well). I think that’s a great thing. I look forward to the future they’re paving. They don’t have an easy job ahead, but I do think they have tremendous opportunity.