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Drumm ran up €1,136 bill

HEALTH Service Executive (HSE) chief Brendan Drumm ran up a dinner and business meeting bill of €1,136.95 in one of Dublin's plushest hotels while entertaining hospital consultants, it was revealed yesterday.

Prof Drumm held the business meeting in the Merrion Hotel – opposite Government Buildings – in June 2007 when he discussed the "international experience" of appointing hospital consultants as clinical directors.

Clinical director posts were established last year and involve a senior specialist taking responsibility for a team of doctors.

The bill is revealed in Prof Drumm's list of expenses claims totalling €43,255 since he was appointed as head of the HSE in August 2005.

He also claimed €919.01 for dinner in another trendy Dublin eatery, Chapter One, after he entertained a "high-level ministerial delegation from Grenada" in relation to the development of cancer services in November 2006.

His expenses averaged about €590 a month since he took office, according to details obtained by the ‘Irish Medical News’.

Other bills claimed for include:

  • €5,834 .70 for a business trip from Dublin to Toronto, New York and Los Angeles in April 2006.
  • €1,133.92 for four nights accommodation and subsistence at the Royal Merion King Edward Hotel in Toronto, Canada in May 2007.
  • €912.76 for a return trip to the hotel in May 2008. Most of the expenses relate to bills and subsistence costs for many regular meetings with senior officials held in some of the finest hotels in the city including the Four Seasons, the Conrad, the Westbury and Merrion Hotel .

This is despite the availability of large meetings rooms in the HSE-owned Dr Steeven’s Hospital near Heuston Station which was re-modelled as health board offices several years ago.

The details also reveal that Prof Drumm – who is on a salary and perks package of around €500,000 a year – is also entitled to around €10,015 to have his medical indemnity insurance, membership of the Royal College of Physicians and subscription to medical journals paid for.

A spokesperson for Prof Drumm said none of his advisers accompanied him on trips abroad nor did any members of his family.