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The HSE has recruited 135 consultants over the last year with another 78 in the process of being appointed, but the salary differential is causing difficulty, CEO Mr Paul Reid has told the Medical Independent (MI).
Speaking to MI after he addressed the Global Health Symposium at the College of Anaesthesiologists of Ireland on 25 October, Mr Reid said: “The facts are we need to recruit more consultants and I want us to recruit more consultants. It’s a global problem for all health systems. We are in the process of recruiting. We have recruited 135 consultants over the last year, as well as another 78 coming through the pipeline at the moment, who will be appointed.
“So we are having some success, but it is very difficult. Look, I have said that the issue of pay parity for new [consultant] entrants is an issue in terms of retention, it’s an issue in terms of recruitment, it’s an issue in terms of equity.”
Mr Reid said he awaited the outcome of an upcoming process between the Department of Health and the IMO.
Meanwhile, Mr Reid admitted there was “a lot more work to do” on the proposed regional division of the health service in the coming months.
“First of all, it’s absolutely the right thing,” Mr Reid commented. “We have a too centralised, nationalised role in the HSE as a body; we need to be devolving more responsibility and accountability at a regional level.
“The design, as in the geographical design of the regions, has been set out. But there is a lot more work to do in the next six or nine months and indeed working with the Colleges in terms of how we would implement that structure.”
*Coverage of the Global Health Symposium at the College of Anaesthesiologists of Ireland will be in MI’s 14 November issue.