Doubling of DHB staff on $400,000+

The number of Southern District Health Board staff earning over $400,000 more than doubled in the last financial year, the board's annual report shows.

The 2014-15 report shows 13 staff received more than $400,000, compared with six the previous year.

Chief executive Carole Heatly has been overtaken in the pay stakes by two employees earning $520,000-$530,000.

Last year, she was top-equal, on $500,000 to $510,000; her pay has not moved this year.

All up, 561 employees received more than $100,000, compared with 521 last year.

Of staff earning more than $100,000, 413 were in medical or dental roles.

The executive management team's wages were nearly $2.8 million for 10.7 fulltime-equivalent roles.

The board members, who were dismissed by Health Minister Dr Jonathan Coleman less than two weeks before the end of the financial year, received $357,000 in meeting fees.

Their replacements, commissioner Kathy Grant and her two deputies (a third deputy was appointed later), received $13,000 between the board members' dismissal and June 30.

In the introduction, Mrs Grant and Ms Heatly said 2014-15 had been a "difficult time''.

"The move [to sack the board] was made as the board had been unable to satisfactorily control the growth in the DHB's deficit and the projected deficit for the 2015-16 year.''

"The [commissioner] team will focus on developing a way forward for the DHB designed around new models of care which ensure patients get the right care, in the right place, at the right time and by the right people.''

The board posted a $27.18million deficit in 2014-15.

When contacted, senior doctors' union executive director Ian Powell said it was unclear how many, if any, of the top wages - those over $400,000 - were medical.

If there were any, it might be the result of a "historical arrangement''.

When contacted, Ms Heatly was not sure why the number of staff in the top brackets rose, but they were likely to be clinical staff who had taken on extra responsibility or negotiated pay rises.


The numbers

561 staff earning $100,000 or more

13 staff earning more than $400,000

2 staff earning $520,000 to $530,000

10.7 executive management staff earning almost $2.8 million

$357,000 board members' fees

Source: Southern District Health Board annual report  


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