White to replace Shortall in health post


MINISTER OF STATE:THE FORMAL appointment of Labour TD Alex White as Minister of State for Health is expected at the forthcoming Cabinet meeting on Tuesday next.

Tánaiste and Labour Party leader Eamon Gilmore announced yesterday afternoon that he had proposed Mr White for the role of Minister of State with responsibility for primary care.

A statement on behalf of Minister for Health James Reilly said he “looks forward to working with Alex White and Minister Kathleen Lynch in the major task of reform of the health services”.

Dr Reilly paid tribute to Ms Shortall, “whose commitment to the betterment of the health services was clear”, and he expressed confidence that the “new team” would build on her work, especially her “initiatives aimed at dealing with the great difficulties associated with alcohol abuse in Irish society”.

Mr Gilmore also said he looked forward to working with Mr White on “implementing the commitments in the programme for government on health service reforms”.

Currently chairman of the Oireachtas Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, Mr White represents the Dublin South constituency.

He had previously been a member of the Seanad, elected on the cultural and educational panel in 2007.

He is a senior counsel and a graduate in economic and social studies from Trinity College in (1981).