Dowrick appointed as health CEO

STEWART Dowrick has been appointed as the chief executive officer of the new Mid North Coast Local Health Network.

The Mid North Coast LHN, which came into being on January 1, includes seven public hospitals – Coffs Harbour, Bellingen, Dorrigo, Macksville, Kempsey, Wauchope and Port Macquarie and a range of associated health services.

The chair of the Governing Council for the Network, Warren Grimshaw, said he was delighted with the selection of Mr Dowrick as the inaugural chief executive of the Network.

“Mr Dowrick is well positioned to lead the MNCLHN, having been a key player in many changes in Health from the construction of the Coffs Harbour Health Campus which was commissioned in 2001; the concept and establishment of the North Coast Cancer Institute located in both Port Macquarie and Coffs Harbour with a unit recently constructed and commissioned in Lismore, and the return of Port Macquarie Base Hospital to public sector ownership and management,” Mr Grimshaw said.

Now 42, Mr Dowrick has more than 20 years’ experience working in NSW Health and was the executive director of clinical operations with the North Coast Area Health Service before taking on his new role.

He began his career in health at the former Camperdown Children’s Hospital in 1990, before moving to the Central Coast Area Health Service in 1993 and the Mid North Coast Central sector in 1999.

He has specialised in health economics, hospital and corporate service management, working in five different executive roles. He has worked as the Area Director for Financial and Corporate Services – Mid North Coast Area Health Service; Director Port Macquarie Base Hospital Transition; Deputy Administrator for Mid North Coast Area Health Service; Executive Director, Corporate Services, North Coast Area Health Service; and Executive Director of Clinical Operations with the North Coast Area Health Service.

Included among the projects he lists as his proudest achievements are:

Major capital works projects at all major hospitals on the North Coast from Taree to Tweed Heads during the past 10 years.

The establishment of the North Coast Cancer Institute (Coffs Harbour, Port Macquarie and Lismore)

The achievement, for the first time, of no surgical ready for care patients waiting longer than their allocated category’s time as at June 30, 2010 for the North Coast Area Health Service.

Married and the father of two children, Mr Dowrick is a lifesaving instructor and patrol member of the Tacking Point Surf Life Saving Club and a cricket coach for the Port Macquarie junior club and a hockey coach.

He is based in Port Macquarie and will be in Coffs Harbour on Thursday, making his first official visit to the base hospital in his new role.

A decision on the permanent location of the new network’s headquarters has not yet been made.

The governing council of the Mid North Coast LHN, chaired by Coffs Harbour-based Warren Grimshaw, is expected to meet for the first time early next month.



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