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Wednesday, 23 July 2014

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Former North Cumbria hospitals boss lands top job in New Zealand

The former boss of north Cumbria’s hospitals has left the UK to become chief executive of a health trust on the other side of the world.

Carole Heatly photo
Carole Heatly

Carole Heatly held the top position at Carlisle’s Infirmary and Whitehaven’s West Cumberland Hospital until June last year.

She left North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust shortly after announcing the two hospitals were to be taken over by another organisation as a result of long-running financial problems. Ms Heatly initially went to take up a new post with Advancing Quality Alliance North West (AQuA), a health improvement organisation.

But now the News & Star can reveal that the former north Cumbrian chief executive has another new post, this time in New Zealand.

Starting next month, she will become chief executive of the Southern District Health Board (Southern DHB). Based in Dunedin, on New Zealand’s South Island, she will be in charge of two newly-merged hospitals covering a wide sparsely populated area.

Announcing her new post, Ms Heatly said: “I am really looking forward to taking up the role. The DHB has made some great gains recently and certainly has a great deal of momentum. I have met with the acting chief executive and leadership team and they are very focused and need to continue to move the DHB forward over the next few months.

“This is a beautiful region and I am excited about the opportunity to work with the DHB, its stakeholders and the community to help ensure that it continues to provide the best possible services.”

In an interview with the Otago Daily Times, the newspaper covering the Dunedin area, Ms Heatly said she was attracted to the job as it demonstrated similar challenges to those she had faced in Carlisle and Whitehaven. Prior to moving to Cumbria in 2008, the former A&E nurse had headed a trust in south west London.

Announcing her appointment in New Zealand, Southern DHB board chair Joe Butterfield said: “I am delighted to announce Carole as our new chief executive. She has a great deal of experience in the NHS and a background well suited to leading Southern DHB as we move to consolidate the organisation and further develop the services we provide the community.

“Ms Heatly has overseen the merger of hospitals in the UK and has a great deal of relevant experience in leading hospital clinicians and management as well as developing relationships with an interdependent university and medical school.”

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