Shaping Society News

Professor Deirdre Madden Appointed to the Board of the HSE

24 Jan 2019

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris T.D., announced eight new appointees to the Board of the HSE.

The Board will be appointed on an administrative basis until the legislation has passed. These positions were advertised through the State Board process operated by the Public Appointments Service. They will join Ciarán Devane, announced as Chair of the HSE Board in September 2018.

The new appointees announced today are:

  • Fergus Finlay, former CEO of Barnardos
  • Tim Hynes, Group Chief Information Officer, AIB
  • Prof Deirdre Madden, professor of law at UCC and chair of the Commission on Patient Safety and Quality Assurance. Dr Madden will be appointed Deputy Chair of the HSE Board
  • Dr Sarah McLoughlin, Science and Communication Officer at Retina International & patient advocate
  •  Mark Molloy, Quantity Surveyor, member of the Expert Group on Tort Reform and Management of Clinical Negligence Claims & patient advocate
  • Aogán Ó Fearghail, former GAA President
  • Fiona Ross, chair of CIE and Mental Health Ireland
  • Dr Yvonne Traynor, vice president of Regulatory & Scientific Affairs with Kerry Group

The appointees reflect the range of competencies sought for prospective HSE Board members through the State Board’s process. There remains one final position on the Board to be announced in the coming weeks which will have particular relevance to the competency area of financial planning and management.

Under the new Health Service Executive (Governance) Bill 2018, to be enacted in early 2019, the Board will be the governing body of the HSE and will be accountable to the Minister for Health for the performance of its functions. The CEO of the HSE will be accountable to the Board. The Board will be appointed on an administrative basis until the legislation has passed.

Speaking today, Minister Harris said: “I am pleased to confirm the names of eight new appointees to the Board of the HSE. Chosen for excellence and leadership in their fields, the new board will play a crucial role in reform of our health service as we implement Sláintecare.”

“We have also fulfilled a key recommendation from Dr Gabriel Scally’s report by ensuring the Board will have members with patient advocacy experience and expertise. This will ensure the patient’s voice is embedded in the reform of our health service and patient concerns are at the heart of the key decisions taken.”

“I want to thank all those who applied, with specific thanks to the individuals who have been chosen to take up these challenging but exciting positions. This Board will be a key component in strengthening HSE governance and will contribute to enhancing the oversight and performance of the HSE.”

Priority issues for the new HSE Board include:

  • Developing and implementing an effective performance management and accountability system in the HSE
  • Developing a plan for building public trust and confidence in the HSE and the wider health service
  • Ensuring the HSE’s full support for and implementation of the Government’s programme of health reform as set out in the Sláintecare Implementation Plan

The HSE Governance Bill has passed Second Stage and will now proceed to Committee Stage. The Minister for Health has secured Cabinet approval to bring forward a number of amendments to the HSE Governance Bill. There are three changes proposed.
The first is a requirement for the Minister to give a three-year Strategic Direction Statement to the HSE Board to inform the preparation by the HSE of its three-year Corporate Plan to be supplemented by yearly Statements of Priorities.
The second is a change in approach to the annual Service Plan, now to be an annual Performance Delivery Plan. As part of this process, the Minister’s approval of the Performance Delivery Plan will not be required but the HSE must submit the draft Plan to the Minister and the Minister may direct the HSE to amend the Plan. In line with this, similar new arrangements will apply to the Capital Plan, also an annual process.
The third will designate specific functions to the Board and the CEO with a focus on performance and accountability. The amendments will also require the Board to establish arrangements for managing the CEO’s performance.

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