Local Health Network change

WITH the move to the Mid North Coast and North Coast Local Health Networks just nine weeks away, the chief executive office of the North Coast Area Health Service is at full stretch.

Chris Crawford said the January 1 start date for the new LHNs mean that there were tight time frames for all the steps that must be taken before the new networks take over from their parent organisation, which has been in place for eight years.

The present North Coast Area Health Service will be split, with Coffs Harbour, Bellingen, Dorrigo and Nambucca becoming part of the Mid North Coast LHN, which extends south to Port Macquarie and Wauchope. The more southerly coastal areas will go to the Hunter LHN.

Grafton will become part of the North Coast LHN.

Mr Crawford said they had already set up a transition task force.

“We need to have governing councils, CEOs and chairs and staffing and policies need to be split up,” he said.

“There will be a body above them (the governing council) – the clinical support cluster and we are working flat chat to start on January 1.

“There is a lot to do in a short time – as of December 31 the area ceases to exist.”

He said he expected the chairs of the governing committees to be announced in the next week or so and a shortlist of applicants for the governing council would close on Friday.

Once formed, the governing council will select their choice of chief executive office and will recommend this to the NSW Minister for Health who has the power of veto.

The CEO positions will be advertised in November and the appointments will be made in mid-Decem-


Mr Crawford said he had not made up his mind whether he would apply for one of these positions.

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