Northern Ireland

Board appointed to oversee implementation of healthcare plan

A 'Transformation Advisory Board' will oversee the direction and speed of reform, while a 'Transformation Implementation Group' will manage its execution Image copyright Thinkstock
Image caption A 'Transformation Advisory Board' will oversee the direction and speed of reform, while a 'Transformation Implementation Group' will manage its execution

The Northern Ireland health minister has appointed two expert panels to oversee the implementation of her 10-year plan for healthcare.

Michelle O'Neill has said 'Health and Wellbeing 2026, Delivering Together' is a "wholesale transformation" of Northern Ireland's health service.

The board overseeing the transition includes Professor Rafael Bengoa.

In October, Professor Bengoa published a report recommending widespread change to the healthcare system.

A 'Transformation Advisory Board' will oversee the direction and speed of reform, while a 'Transformation Implementation Group' will manage its execution.

Announcing the two boards, Ms O'Neill said: "Given the size and scale of the challenge ahead, we need to start now to properly plan, implement and embed the whole system transformation.

Image caption The board overseeing the transition includes Professor Rafael Bengoa

"That begins with the leadership and structure to drive change, with the involvement of service providers and users.

"I am committed to playing my part in making change happen and will chair the Transformation Advisory Board, whose membership will be drawn from the field of independent experts, trade unions, service users and community and voluntary sector representatives, along with the permanent secretary of the Department of Health."

Mairead McAlinden, chief executive of Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust, will also be on the advisory board.

Ms McAlinden is a former chief executive of the Southern Trust in Northern Ireland.

The Transformation Implementation Group will be chaired by the permanent secretary of the Department of Health and includes clinical experts and "leaders from the wider health and social care system", according to a statement by the department.

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