Every year on February 4th, World Cancer Day is recognized to empower the globe to unite to face one of the greatest health challenges in history. Cancer is the second-leading cause of death worldwide, and by 2040, the number of new cancer cases worldwide are expected to rise to 30 million.
But here’s the good news: Up to 3.7 million lives could be saved each year by implementing resource appropriate strategies for prevention, early detection, and treatment. And that’s what World Cancer Day is all about. This year’s theme, “Close the Care Gap,” is dedicated to raising awareness of the equity gap that affects care.
At Hitachi Vantara, we’re committed to bringing innovations to the issues that society face. Through innovative and data-driven technology, we aim to play our part in closing the cancer care gap for a cancer-free world.
In recognition of World Cancer Day, we caught up with Alison Lochrie to learn about the incredible work she’s doing with our client, NHS England to fight cancer. Here’s what she had to say:
Tell us a little bit about your career journey.
In 2015, I was contacted about an exciting managed services opportunity in healthcare at Hitachi Vantara. Although I had spent my early career in retail and then as an IT service director in various sectors including transportation, finance and supply chain, the opportunity to be involved in healthcare was one I couldn’t pass up. Working in health was a dream career for me, as I’ve always felt it’s a sector which truly touches everyone.
What do you enjoy most about your role at Hitachi Vantara?
To be part of a technology team that provides services that change peoples’ lives is something I couldn’t be more proud of.
My team, my colleagues and my drive for service excellence is what keeps me focused every day. I love people management; I love service management and I love driving improvement and doing my very best for my team and my clients – especially when they are as incredible as mine!
Alison Lochrie (center) with members of the National Breast Screening System (NBSS) team.
Hitachi Vantara offers great flexibility (I currently work a condensed workweek) and is extremely supportive of its employees – this has been particularly clear during the COVID-19 pandemic. Working here has allowed me to grow as a leader, even while being a single parent with two young children (contrary to previous employers that didn’t think I could do both!). I am thankful for all the opportunities and the recognition I’ve had at Hitachi.
Fun fact: My first experience with Hitachi was getting a stack stereo with graphic equalizer for my 13th birthday – I still have it, and it still works! How’s that for an example of a great product .
What does the work you do with NHS England mean to you on a personal level?
The NHS Breast Screening Programme aims to detect breast cancer at the earliest opportunity, maximize the success of treatment and reduce mortality from breast cancer. As a critical part of this programme, I feel I’m able to directly contribute to saving lives.
Working in tech and providing the core platform which ensures women are given the opportunity to be regularly screened for cancer couldn’t be more poignant. I personally know a number of people affected by cancer, as I’m sure we all do, and to be part of the tech service which works to support the NHS screening teams at hospitals across England, Isle of Man and Northern Ireland is something I’m extremely proud of.
How do you see the work we’re doing with NHS England evolving in the future?
We have been working for many years to drive the re-platforming of the current NBSS (National Breast Screening System) platform, and we recently kicked off an infrastructure improvement programme which starts to lay the foundation for this work.
We’re very excited about the potential for digital transformation over the coming years. Hitachi and my healthcare colleagues are bursting with ideas and innovation to drive improvement for our clients, and in turn, improvement in the health of our communities.
How do you think Hitachi contributes to the fight against cancer?
Hitachi is leading-edge when it comes to the global fight against cancer. An example of this is our Proton Beam Therapy – by precisely targeting tumours with protons, doctors in the U.S. can help patients beat cancer without damaging healthy tissue.
If interested, you can learn more about Hitachi’s Particle Therapy Solution here.
Alison Lochrie is Service Director & Delivery Partner at Hitachi Vantara.