Tuesday 21 November 2017

Now we need real plans

While some of his colleagues have had a relatively low-profile start to their new jobs in Government, there is no doubt that new health minister, Dr James Reilly, has made an impact in his new ministerial role. Considering his personality, there was never any doubt he would. He is determined to make a mark on a department memorably described as 'Angola' by one of his predecessors.

However, as Jimmy Tolan, the chief executive of the VHI departs, the question being asked about Mr Reilly is whether his impact will be a positive or a negative one. It is probably too early to tell. Certainly losing someone as respected and experienced as Mr Tolan from the VHI cannot be viewed as anything other than a setback. The minister is trying to shake up the VHI and introduce a new healthcare model. It is an ambitious project, and for Mr Reilly to achieve his goals he needs people like Mr Tolan around.

Neither man wanted to explain the reasons for the departure yesterday, but clearly they did not see eye to eye.

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