THE MINISTER FOR Health Dr James Reilly has appointed Tony O’Brien as the new Director General-designate of the HSE.
O’Brien, who is currently the Chief Operating Officer of the Special Delivery Unit in the Department of Health, will formally assume the position once the new legislation allowing for structural changes in the HSE is passed by the Oireachtas in the Autumn.
The current HSE Chief Executive Cathal Magee announced his resignation two weeks ago. His position is being abolished and replaced with that of Director General.
Minister Reilly welcomed the appointment of O’Brien to the new post, but warned that major cuts will have to be implemented in the coming months as the HSE struggles with a €281m deficit.
“The remainder of the year will be a very difficulty one for our health services given our very considerable financial problems” said Reilly. “But let me be clear that those problems will be managed on the basis that services will only be affected as a last resort.”
A native of Connemara, Co Galway, O’Brien was Chief Executive of the Irish Family Planning Association between 1991 and 2002.