Criticism at £400K NHS Kernow director appointment

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Image caption NHS England said the appointment of a turnaround director was a "crucial element in strengthening" NHS Kernow

Campaigners have criticised the appointment of a new £400,000-a-year director to a cash-strapped health commissioning body.

Last year NHS Kernow, in Cornwall, was put under special measures because of a £14m deficit.

Health Initiative Cornwall said it was a "shame" that NHS England had "forced" the new turnaround director Keith Pringle on NHS Kernow.

NHS England said it was "encouraged to see the early progress being made".

'Crucial element'

Graham Webster, vice chair of Health Initiative Cornwall, said: "The governing body of NHS Kernow already has quite a number of senior executives and all these people are being paid huge amounts of money."

One of the conditions of the special measures imposed by NHS England was that NHS Kernow had to appoint a turnaround director.

NHS England said Mr Pringle's appointment was a "crucial element in strengthening" NHS Kernow's "capacity to recover its position while safeguarding standards of care".

NHS Kernow said in a statement: "The actual cost to be incurred will depend how long the legal direction requiring a turnaround director remains in force."

Mr Pringle, a former chief restructuring officer with Sherwood Forest NHS, declined to comment.

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