independent

Sunday 20 April 2014

St Vincent's Hospital admits seven staff getting top-ups

St Vincent’s Hospital and, inset, Group chief executive, Nicholas Jermyn.

THE number of staff at St Vincent's Hospital in Dublin known to be in receipt of salary top-ups on their public pay deals has doubled.

The hospital has confirmed that seven staff, and not three as previously believed, receive extra payments totalling more than €230,000 a year.

Figures include group chief executive Nicholas Jermyn, who is paid a publicly-funded salary of €136,282 plus a private salary of €136,591 and a car allowance of €19,796, bringing his pay packet to €292,669 a year.

Director of Finance and company secretary, Cormac Maloney, is paid €108,332 by the HSE plus an additional €32,544, while Director of Nursing Mary Duff receives €81,552 in public money, plus an additional €14,853.

Three other staff members are also in receipt of top-ups totalling €28,211 a year, but their identity is not being disclosed.

The St Vincent's Healthcare Group, which includes the publicly-funded St Vincent's University Hospital (SVUH), St Vincent's Private Hospital (SVPH) and St Michael's Hospital in Dun Laoghaire, revealed the extent of the payments in a letter to the HSE sent yesterday.

Another executive, Bill Maher, was paid a private salary when acting chief executive of St Vincent's University Hospital.

Two years ago, Health Minister James Reilly made arrangements to secure him an annual €195,000 pay deal to take over the running of public hospitals in the west of Ireland.

This was to compensate him for the loss of income from private sources.

St Vincent's said the extra payments were fully tax compliant and did not involve any charitable donations, and were made to staff who worked in both the public and private hospitals.

They were paid to reflect the "complex and multi-faceted nature" of the jobs being carried out, did not accrue any pension entitlements and were funded from private income.

"The Group is in a position to fund this remuneration as it has a source of private income from the operation of a private hospital, St Vincent's Private Hospital," the letter said.

SECONDMENT

"The three posts identified in the schedule below contribute, inter alia, to the success of SVPH, SVUH and the wider group."

It then sets out the pay arrangements for Mr Jermyn, Mr Maloney and Ms Duff, and refers to a fourth executive "on secondment to the HSE, of which you are aware", which refers to Mr Maher.

It adds: "There are three other people who are in receipt of additional taxable income. In total, €28,211, from private sources, not charitable donations." The letter comes less than a week after the hospital refused to tell the Public Accounts Committee how much it was paying in top-up allowances to senior staff.

However, it did insist the payments were from private funds, and that the HSE had been aware of the payments since 2009. However, the HSE was only told of three senior staff in receipt of extra payments, which has now emerged to be seven. The HSE warned the hospital it could lose public funding unless it complied with a direction to reveal the salary details.

A spokesman for Dr Reilly said the matter would be discussed at a meeting with the HSE early in the new year.

"Minister Reilly has requested that the HSE ensure that all section 38 (publicly-funded) agencies are brought into compliance with public sector pay policy," he said.

"The HSE will be meeting with senior figures from St Vincent's Hospital in the first week of January next to discuss these matters. The information in (the) letter will be examined at that meeting."

Irish Independent

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