Hospital building project manager leaves

The senior manager overseeing a multimillion-dollar building project at Dunedin Hospital has left for "family reasons'', and a project manager has been "seconded'' from consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Southern District Health Board chief executive Carole Heatly said she accepted Peter Beirne's resignation last month "with regret''.

Mr Beirne was infrastructure and strategic projects director, but had previously been chief financial officer. He shifted to the new role two months before board members were sacked last year over the organisation's financial failure.

But he continued in the finance role in an acting capacity until commissioner Kathy Grant brought in contractors until the position was filled.

When Mr Beirne's new role was announced, the emphasis was on planning the long-delayed Dunedin Hospital rebuild, but the focus shifted to the more immediate interim works package.

The $22.5million package was approved by Health Minister Dr Jonathan Coleman last year.

Ms Heatly said the board would take some time to consider the "long-term leadership'' of infrastructure and strategic projects.

"With regret, I accepted Peter Beirne's resignation from Southern DHB ...

"Peter plans to move back to the North Island in the future for family reasons.

"In the interim, an experienced project manager has been seconded from PwC to undertake an acting project manager role ...''

The Otago Daily Times has asked about the cost of the PwC secondment, and the board said the request would be considered under the Official Information Act.

Mr Beirne's departure follows that of human resources director John Pine, in March.

An attempt to contact Mr Beirne was unsuccessful.

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