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New Chair appointed for Health and Social Care Board


Les Drew

The Minister for Health, Robin Swann, has announced the appointment of a Non-Executive Chair of the Health and Social Care Board (HSCB).

Mr Leslie Drew’s appointment will run for a two year period from the 1 April 2020 until 31 March 2022. Mr Drew is a self-employed business consultant providing strategic advice regarding business improvement and change management.

Les was previously employed by Northern Ireland Electricity Networks as Head of Procurement. He has held a number of other senior management posts during his 39-year career including, Group Financial Controller; Governance and Risk Manager; Regulation Officer; and Information Technology Contract Manager and until March 2017 Head of Procurement.

He was a Non-Executive Director of the former South and East Belfast HSS Trust where he was Chair of the Audit Committee. He also served as a member of the Belfast HSC Trust for 8 years since its establishment on 1 April 2007. He was also a Non-Executive Director of the Public Health Agency for 5 years between July 2015 and March 2020.

The Minister has also announced extensions to the terms of appointment of Mr Stephen Leach, Dr Melissa McCullough and Mr John Mone as Non-Executive Directors of the HSCB. These extensions began on 1 April 2020 and will run for a period of up to six months.
The appointment of the Non-Executive Chair and the extensions for the three Non-Executive Directors was made in accordance with the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner for Public Appointments for Northern Ireland.

The Board of the HSCB is made up of five Executive Directors including the Chief Executive, a Non-Executive Chair and seven Non-Executive Directors.

The role of the HSCB is to arrange or ‘commission’ a comprehensive range of modern and effective health and social services for the 1.8 million people who live in Northern Ireland, to work with the Health and Social Care Trusts that directly provide services to people to ensure that these meet their needs, and to deploy and manage its annual funding from the Northern Ireland Executive to ensure that all services are safe and sustainable.

Non-Executive Director profiles:

Mr Stephen Leach CB lives in North Down. He is a retired senior civil servant and was Chair of the Northern Ireland Criminal Justice Board from 2000 to 2009. He formerly chaired the Governance and Audit Committees of the Health and Social Care Board and was a Parole Commissioner for Northern Ireland. He was the Northern Ireland Commissioner on the Criminal Cases Review Commission from 2014 to 2019.

Dr Melissa McCullough lives in Belfast and is a Visiting Lecturer at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and a member of the Clinical Governance Board for Doctor Care Anywhere, London. Melissa was appointed to the National Institute for Clinical and Care Excellence (NICE, London) Guideline Committee for Lyme Disease in 2016, and has recently been appointed as a Panel Assessor and Chair for Undergraduate Medical Education and the Ethics Panel with the Medical Council Ireland. Melissa has worked as a senior academic in medical education specialising in ethics and law, professionalism and leadership in medical schools in the UK and Ireland since 2005, and her teaching and research interests are primarily in clinical ethics, public health ethics, human rights & healthcare, diversity and inclusion, equality and justice in health and social care and health policy.

Mr John Mone lives in Co Armagh. He is a Non-Executive Director of the HSCB since 2009. He spent his career in the health service and is a former director of nursing. He is a primary school governor and member of the N.I. Research Ethics Committee.