LOCAL HSE managers were not warned in advance of Health Minister James Reilly’s announcement of changes in how hospital services in the Mid-West are to be organised.
The Limerick Leader has learned that the Minister briefed TDs and issued a press statement before managers who are losing responsibilities learned of the changes indirectly.
With the acute hospitals in the HSE West - including Limerick Regional and Galway University Hospital - highlighted as having run up huge deficits in the first half of this year, Dr Reilly expressed his disappointment and announced he was considering bringing in a private company to run hospital affairs.
But in an announcement last Friday, Minister Reilly said he was instead installing civil servants as CEOs of the hospital groups in Limerick/Clare/North Tipperary and in Galway/Roscommon.
In the Mid-West, Ann Doherty, former head of the National Hospitals Office, has been appointed chief executive of the hospitals for a three-year term, overseeing a single clinical governance model and one regional budget.
This effectively dismantles the integrated services area for the Mid-West established by the HSE a year ago to manage all hospital, community and social services.