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New governance arrangements for CCDHB

Hon David Cunliffe
Minister of Health

13 December 2007

New governance arrangements for CCDHB

Minister of Health David Cunliffe today announced his decision to appoint a new Chair and Crown Monitor to Capital and Coast District Health Board.

The Crown Monitor, who will report directly to the Minister, is Dr Ian Brown an Obstetrician Gynaecologist, who was the Director of Medical Services at Northland DHB until November this year, he is also the former chair of the national Chief Medical Officers' Forum and has been a member of the National Medical Strategy Workforce Group.

The new Chair is Sir John Anderson the current Chairman of Television New Zealand and is one of New Zealand’s pre-eminent business leaders with a proven record in governance.

Ken Douglas will remain as Deputy Chair to provide continuity.

“I believe that Sir John Anderson and Dr Ian Brown have the experience and skills to provide stability and give clear direction to Capital and Coast DHB,” Mr Cunliffe said.

The first priority for the new board and Crown Monitor would include consulting with clinical staff on the creation of a forward plan for the DHB,” Mr Cunliffe said.

“It is my intention to appoint Peter Douglas and Selwyn Katene to the Board. Judith Aitken and other elected members will also remain on the Board.”

Mr Cunliffe thanked Dr Aitken for her contribution to the board and for her efforts to stabilise a difficult situation over recent months.

“My decisions took into account the need to usher in a new era of direction at Capital and Coast while also ensuring some continuity remained,” Mr Cunliffe said.

“The situation at Capital and Coast was serious and I have treated it accordingly. I sought advice from several sources including my Cabinet colleagues.”

As well as appointing the Crown Monitor discussion on providing deficit support to Capital and Coast DHB will continue.

“The discussions with the Board will focus on deficit support in order to relieve some of the financial pressure currently experienced by the Board.

“This does not mean they have an open cheque book. It means that this DHB is expected to resolve the issues it has and that the Government will be working with them to ensure that all solutions are sustainable.”

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Who appoints a Crown monitor?
If the Minister of Health considers it is desirable to do so for the purpose of assisting in improving the performance of a DHB, he or she may, under section 30 of the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act 2000, appoint one or more persons to act as Crown monitors at any DHB.

2. What is the role of a Crown monitor?
The functions of the Crown monitor are to observe the decision-making processes and the decisions of the board; assist the board in understanding the policies and wishes of the Government so they can be appropriately reflected in board decisions and advise the Minister of any matters relating to the DHB, the board or its performance.

3. Who does the Crown monitor report to?
The Crown monitor reports directly to the Minister of Health.

4. Can a Crown monitor appoint or dismiss board members?
No, however, the monitor advises the Minister on the performance of the board they are monitoring.

5. Can the board appoint a new chief executive when a Crown monitor is in place?
The appointment of a Crown monitor does not prevent a DHB from appointing a new chief executive.

6. How long will the Crown monitor be in place for at Capital and Coast DHB?
A Crown monitor can be in place for as long as the Minister of Health determines. The terms and conditions of the monitor's appointment are agreed between the Minister and the monitor.

7. Has a Crown monitor ever been appointed to any DHB board?
Since DHBs were established in 2001, the Minister of Health has not appointed a Crown monitor to a DHB board or replaced a DHB board with a commissioner.

Since 2001, previous Ministers of Health have appointed or agreed to the appointment of board advisors. A board advisor performs a similar function as a Crown monitor but is appointed by agreement and not under legislation.

ENDS

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