Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Ceisteanna (592)

Terence Flanagan


592. Deputy Terence Flanagan asked the Minister for Health the action he is taking to encourage more Irish executives to serve on State boards under the remit of his Department; his views on the recent MERC Partners survey; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12462/14]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

In line with Government Decision S180/20/10/14234 of 2011, relating to the advertising for expressions of interest in vacancies on State Boards, my Department currently advertises for Board vacancies as they arise, where I, as Minister for Health, have nominating rights. Competencies are developed and agreed in conjunction with relevant Boards, depending on their requirements. The suitability of applicants is assessed against these criteria and a short-list is compiled from which I may make appointments. Appointments may not necessarily be from one of the applications received through the advertising process, which is also in line with the Government Decisions.

I welcome one of the main findings of the Merc Partners survey, which showed that 80% of the those involved in the research would be happy to put themselves forward for a position on a State board. Boards need a broad range of competencies in order to function effectively and it good to know that there is such enthusiasm among the private sector to contribute to public sector boards. To date my Department has posted over 30 notices for expressions of interest to State boards on its website or through the Public Appointments Service and this process will continue as a way of ensuring the best mix of skills and experience both from public and private sectors is available to our Boards. I am confident that the appointments made by me are contributing in a meaningful way to the important work undertaken by the various State bodies under the aegis of this Department.