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Ambulance service boss quits €100k post after just two years

THE head of the country's ambulance service is set to quit his €100,000 post after just two years in the job.

Robert Morton, director of the National Ambulance Service (NAS), will leave his post for a new position as head of the ambulance service in New South Wales in Australia.

In July 2011, the ambulance service was embroiled in the furore over the failure to transfer 14-year-old Leitrim girl Meadhbh McGivern from her home to a hospital in London for a liver transplant.

Despite a series of phone calls between the HSE and the Coast Guard Service, confusion arose and there was a delay in finding a suitable aircraft.

As a result, Meadhbh missed the deadline for her surgery.

Health Minister James Reilly subsequently apologised to the girl and her family and an investigation by HIQA found that no person or agency was in charge.

Mr Morton was previously chief ambulance officer with the HSE in the Midlands and was appointed director of the National Ambulance Service in February 2011.

Mr Morton declined to comment when contacted about his future plans yesterday.

He said he would not be speaking about any aspect of his life outside of the HSE and referred all queries to the HSE press office.

A spokesperson said that the HSE was not in a position to comment about "individual staff matters".

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