Nurses and Midwives Association backs new health chief

A staff restructure within the Southern NSW Local Health District has been put on the back-burner following the appointment of a new chief executive.

The shake-up, proposed by former CEO Janet Compton, would have had significant consequences for managers across Goulburn, Yass, Braidwood and Crookwell, among other regions, The Post has been told.

It downgraded some managers while removing the roles or merging responsibilities of others.

One insider told The Post the change would have removed the ability of managers to advocate for their services. 

However NSW Nurses and Midwives Association organiser for Goulburn, Matthew Doherty confirmed the restructure had been halted until at least the newly appointed CEO, Andrew Newton, had looked at it.

“We and the Health Services Union raised a lot of concerns around the grading of managers and the extending of roles across the area,” he said.

“...It highlighted a lack of consultation by the previous CEO. If we had been listened to a lot of this would not have reached the point it did.”

Mr Doherty declined to provide further details but said consultation would now occur. He was buoyed by reports that Mr Newton had a consultative style.

Meantime, the Association has welcomed Mr Newton’s appointment, which was announced on Monday when he took up the role. He was more recently a general manager with the Western Sydney Local Health District.

“It’s good having a CEO with 15 years’ previous management experience in health and we support the decision and hope to build a good relationship with him,” Mr Doherty said.

“We are happy to support and work with any CEO the Health District deems appropriate.”

Asked about his expectations, Mr Doherty said he hoped community consultation about the Goulburn Base Hospital redevelopment and other health services continued.

“Goulburn people have shown they don’t like decisions foisted on them and if asked, most are happy to give feedback,” he said.