Ryall questioned over top board posts

OLIVIA CARVILLE
Last updated 10:24 19/12/2013
Tony Ryall
IAIN MCGREGOR/FAIRFAX NZ
HEALTH MINISTER: Tony Ryall.

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Leading Christchurch clinicians are demanding answers after the Canterbury District Health Board (CDHB) chairman Bruce Matheson was replaced with Timaru man Murray Cleverley.

Questions have been raised about whether the former chairman of the board, Bruce Matheson, was not re-appointed because he "stood out against" Health Minister Tony Ryall.

In an opinion piece published by Fairfax today, Christchurch Hospital medical staff association president Dr Ruth Spearing has called for Mr Ryall to give the people of Canterbury an explanation over "why he has removed two key people from our health service".

Mr Matheson and deputy chairman Peter Ballantyne were both stood down by Mr Ryall this term despite the post-earthquake successes of the CDHB being recognised on the global stage.

Mr Matheson was replaced with Mr Cleverley, the chair of the South Canterbury DHB, who is a part-time Cera employee. Steve Wakefield, Cera's former economic recovery team leader, has taken over Ballantyne's role.

Spearing wrote that it was "with great concern and puzzlement" that Matheson and Ballantyne had been removed "with no public explanation".

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