Waikato DHB's $100k club clocks 700 members

MIEK MATHER
Last updated 08:01 23/12/2013

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More than 700 Waikato District Health Board employees are earning more than $100,000 - a big increase from a year ago when 599 workers were over that threshold.

And chief executive Craig Climo isn't even the board's biggest earner - that honour belongs to an unidentified employee, understood to be a top surgeon, who is making between $680,000 to $690,000 each year.

Mr Climo's remuneration for the year ending June 30 was in the $480,000 to $490,000 bracket, up from the $460,000 to $470,000 band a year before.

The income data is included in the health board's annual report, which details a year of successes.

The health board returned a surplus of $2.1 million, well above a planned-for $1 million surplus. It was, however, a big drop from the 2011/12 surplus of $9.4 million, against a planned $11.5 million surplus.

While the figures appear significant, they are small change in the context of the organisation's ongoing $500 million rebuilding programme at Waikato and Thames hospitals.

In his introductory statement to the report, the board's now former chairman Graeme Milne said he was proud of what had been achieved.

"Our elective surgery delivery performance, while in the midst of a huge campus rebuilding programme, is a credit to our clinicians, administrators and management.

"We completed 16,566 elective surgical procedures - a 5 per cent increase on the year before.

"[At Waikato Hospital] we opened stage one of the Meade Clinical Centre, the High Dependency and Intensive Care units, Older Persons and Rehabilitation Building, the Regional Renal Centre, demolished the Smith Building floor by floor and refurbished several of the existing wards. All of these significant projects placed demands on the services and we continued to deliver services while planning and implementing significant change processes."

The board also shelled out a lot more in termination payments. Thirty-one people were paid out $595,023, compared to nine people getting $479,537 in the 2011/12 year.

The board's pay dropped. Mr Milne's income was trimmed from $55,688 last year to $54,750. Deputy chairwoman Sally Christie went from $36,313 to $35,813. The other members received between $25,000 and $29,500.

mike.mather@waikatotimes.co.nz

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