Hundreds of State-funded agencies told to reveal pay rates

Move affects so-called section 39 agencies which receive HSE funding

 Tony O’Brien, Director General of the HSE leaving the Dail.Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

Tony O’Brien, Director General of the HSE leaving the Dail.Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

 

Hundreds of additional health agencies which receive State funding have been told to reveal payments made to senior staff, the HSE’s chief executive said today.

While recent disclosures have been focused on so-called “section 38” agencies - such as the Central Remedial Clinic - HSE officials are now focusing on pay levels in another category of health agency.

These bodies - known as “section 39 agencies” - receive significant levels of State funding.

More than 130 of these organisations receive between €1 and €10 million a year.

Tony O’Brien, chief executive of the HSE, told the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health and Children today that letters were sent to all such organisations last month requiring them to disclose if senior staff are being paid above public sector pay scales.

While staff in these organisations are not regarded as public servants, Mr O’Brien said they were obliged to have “due regard” to public sector pay scales.

In relation to the operation of the Central Remedial Clinic, he said the HSE has taken over the running of the centre on an interim basis and was conducting a thorough audit in pay practices at the centre.

The HSE is also sourcing appropriately qualified staff to serve on a new board of the clinic.

He emphasised that ordinary staff at the organisation should not have their reputation tarnished as a result of recent disclosures.

The staff, he said, had made “tremendous efforts to provide vital services at a time of considerable stress for them during the period of public disclosures”.