THE Private Hospitals Association (PHA) has announced the appointment of former junior health minister Jim Daly as its new chief executive officer.
Mr Daly will lead the PHA nationally and will represent the interests of the sector with a range of key stakeholders including government, the HSE, regulators, health insurers and the wider health sector.
As ceo, Jim is tasked with working with association members in progressing key strategic objectives, including building on the emerging relationship between private hospitals and the wider health sector, and developing a new strategic partnership between the Department of Health/HSE and private hospitals on a multi-annual basis to help tackle the national waiting lists problem.
Announcing the appointment, PHA chairperson Bill Maher said Jim would be a ‘leading voice’ within the sector and help shape the agenda.
‘Covid-19 has brought about new ways of working between public and private and we have shown how a joined-up approach can work in helping defeat the virus,’ he said. ‘We now need to apply that partnership approach and ‘can-do’ mindset to the pervasive problem of hospital waiting lists and take steps to halt their further growth,’ he added.
He said the PHA’s network of 18 private hospitals is key to the delivery of acute and mental health services around the country, conducting 300,000 theatre procedures annually and offering over 750,000 bed nights to the Irish healthcare system.
‘We have shown in the past that we have the capacity to make substantial in-roads into waiting lists when called upon and we can rise to the challenge once again. I look forward to Jim’s valuable contribution as we collectively seek to address the pressing health needs of our population.’
Jim Daly said it was an honour to have been appointed during an ‘exciting yet challenging time in the Irish healthcare sector, after emerging from one of the most seismic periods in our country’s history’ post the Covid-19 pandemic.
‘We are at an important transition point in the delivery of healthcare reform in this country, yet the experience of the past two years has seen unprecedented levels of collaboration with the State and private hospitals, with very constructive engagement occurring on all sides,’ the former Fine Gael TD, from Drinagh, added. ‘This bodes well for the future and I very much look forward to playing my part in progressing that agenda of positivity over the months and years ahead.’
Mr Daly served as a TD in Cork South West between 2011 and announced his retirement from national politics in January 2020. He was previously a member of Cork County Council prior to being elected to represent Cork South West in 2011.
Speaking to The Southern Star this weekend, Mr Daly said he was delighted to take on the role, and noted that another Drimoleague parish man, Tadhg Daly, also has a senior role in the private health sector, being the chief executive of Nursing Homes Ireland.
Jim Daly is also chairman of Home and Community Care Ireland (HCCI), which oversees the private homecare sector.