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West Coast DHB Board Processes A Farce

www.democrats.org.nz
Media Release

Tuesday, 28 June, 2005

WEST COAST DHB BOARD PROCESSES A FARCE

Current West Coast DHB ceo Glenys Baldick must not be allowed to return to the DHB board when she is replaced by the ceo-in-waiting, Kevin Hague, according to the Democrats’ social issues researcher and former West Coast board member, David Tranter.

When Annette King appointed Mrs. Baldick to the West Coast DHB board last year, Health Ministry manager governance Bruce Anderson was quoted in The News (Westport) 1.12.04 as follows; “Mrs. Baldick could not have been considered for the Nelson Marlborough board because of the potential conflict of interest of her being the organisation’s past chief executive”.

Since then the Ministry - and obviously Annette King – have turned a blind eye to an even more serious conflict of interest since the West Coast situation involved, not merely a past DHB position held by Mrs. Baldick, but jumping from the current board to head the same DHB’s corporate office. The recently-announced appointment of Mrs. Baldick’s replacement as ceo again raises the question as to why Mrs. Baldick was allowed – against the Health Ministry’s own stated policy – to hold that office. It is imperative that she does not do another jump between the supposedly distinct roles of management and governance.

A further peculiarity in the West Coast set-up is that although it was stated to be legally necessary to replace me as a board member when I resigned in 2002 this has never been done, so the board has been one member short ever since – and since Mrs. Baldick has taken “leave of absence” to become ceo the board has been down to nine members Mr. Tranter said. While there is little point in having a board when management rule the whole show, it is an intriguing matter as to why Annette King thinks it acceptable for any DHB board to have fewer than the legally proscribed numbers.- unless the Minister is finally conceding the futility of DHB boards under her corporate management-controlled health system?

Democrats for Social Credit call on government to introduce measures to ensure that the board/management conflicts of interest previously identified by the Ministry of Health do not arise again on the West Coast Mr. Tranter said.

ENDS

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