Community Learning Space

The infraNET Project,
Lawson Health Research Institute and
Waterloo Institute for Health Informatics Research

present ...

Healthcare, Biobank, and Research
Information Systems in the UK


Stephen Walker

Professor of Healthcare (Research Informatics), University of Manchester
IS Programme Director, National Institutes for Health Research

Director (Information Systems), UK Clinical Research Network
Chief Information Officer, UK Biobank

Wednesday, November 26, 2008
3:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Davis Centre, Room 1302
University of Waterloo

Seminar Series Sponsors
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
McKesson Information Solutions
Healthcare Information Management and Communications Canada

Presentation Archive 2008


For 31 years, between 1973 and 2004, Stephen Walker worked in the UK National Health Service (NHS) in a variety of roles in finance, performance management, primary care, systems development and programme management. After leaving the NHS, he went on to develop the systems to underpin the world s largest biobanking initiative UK Biobank.UK Biobank, a long-term project hosted by the University of Manchester, began recruiting participants in 2007, gathering samples and information on the health and lifestyle of 500,000 volunteers aged 40 to 69. The project recruited over 100,000 participants in its first year alone. From there he was pulled back into the NHS as Implementation Programme Director for the Information Systems initiative underpinning the UK Government Strategy Best Research for Best Health on behalf of the Department of Health and the National Institute of Health Research.

In this presentation, Steve Walker will talk about the unique and privileged opportunity that this experience has given him to look across the whole healthcare system landscape and how this view is affected by his own experiences as a patient.

About the Speaker

Stephen Walker became CIO of UK Biobank in 2004, leaving the National Health Service after 31 years. Steve was responsible for planning and implementing the information systems that will form the long-term Biobank data repository. In April 2006, he became Implementation Programme Director to lead the development of new systems to support R&D Management for the National Institute for Health Research. In this role, he is working also within the UK Clinical Research Network Coordinating Centre developing and coordinating clinical research networks in the UK. He is also the IS Director for this organization, based at the University of Leeds. Previously, Steve led the Project Connect programme that was responsible for the successful connection of GP practices in England to NHSnet, as well as handling electronic pathology results messaging and electronic transfer of prescriptions. In addition, Steve has worked in hospitals and primary care organisations in management, finance and IT roles. In October 2008 Steve was awarded the honorary title of Professor of Healthcare (Research Information) at the University of Manchester.

For more information
Shirley Fenton
Managing Director, WIHIR
University of Waterloo
(519) 888-4074

Seminar Hosts
This seminar is hosted by the Waterloo Institute for Health Informatics Research (WIHIR) and The infraNET Project, University of Waterloo.

The infraNET Project, initiated by the University of Waterloo in 1996, is a partnership to advance Web and Internet technologies. Its founding partners were: LivePage (now part of Oracle), MKS, Open Text, RIM, Sybase (Waterloo) and Waterloo Maple.

We also gratefully acknowledge the assistance of the Institute for Computer Research, University of Waterloo.