Next chief of HSE faces pay cut up to 25%

THE new chief executive of the Health Service Executive (HSE) can expect a pay cut of up to 25% when he or she replaces outgoing chief Prof Brendan Drumm whose term ends next year.

A spokesperson forthe HSE said that thenew contract terms willtie in with the recommendations of the Review Body on Higher Remunerations in the Public Sector.

Separately, the Irish Examiner has learned that whoever inherits Prof Drumm’s job can expect a pay cut of between 15%-25%. The post was advertised yesterday with a closing date for applications of January 15 next.

The new chief executive will not receive performance-related bonuses, a controversial payment during Prof Drumm’s tenure.

A decision to approve a €70,000 bonus for Prof Drumm earlier this year – relating to his work in 2007 – caused public outrage at a time when the health service is crippled by cutbacks.

The Government has already said no bonuses will be paid to public servants in 2008 and 2009.

Prof Drumm has said he did not negotiate “one penny of the actual remuneration” of his current contract. It was set for British-based Prof Aidan Halligan, who was due to take up the job, but then turned it down.

Prof Drumm started on a salary of €320,000, with the potential for a 25% bonus on top of that. He was also given a car allowance and a pension provision equalling 25% of basic pay. His contract was for five years’ duration with the option of another three, but Prof Drumm announced in September that he will not seek to have his contract renewed when his term comes to an end next year.

Prof Drumm has said that his five-year term in charge showed his “commitment for the country” in changing the system.

He also said that he was afraid of staying in the post for too long, saying “10 years for me is actually too long for somebody to keep inspiring the system”.

Among those tipped by Paddy Power to replace Prof Drumm are Prof Tom Keane, head of the state’s national cancer control programme, at 2/1 favourite. Prof Aidan Halligan is tipped at 6/1. Businessman Gerry Robinson is tipped at 20/1. HSE critic, cancer consultant Prof John Crown is tipped at 100/1. Other possible contenders include internal HSE staff.


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