A HEALTH administrator who resigned from her previous post under a cloud of controversy has been appointed to head up the Southern NSW Health District.
But the District has backed Janet Crompton’s credentials and her ability to lay a “solid foundation” for the health service.
Ms Compton resigned from Melbourne’s Northern Hospital last August amid government and community concerns about the facility’s performance.
The Epping Hospital, under her control, had consistently not met benchmark performance indicators for surgical and emergency categories over one year, The Age reported at the time.
It treated just 43 per cent of category two elective patients on time between January and March. The category includes those requiring hip, knee and heart valve replacements.
The hospital also failed target times for treating category two emergency patients, including those having strokes and suffering major fractures. The data was revealed amid rapid population growth and reported “massive” demand for Northern Health’s services.
Ms Compton resigned suddenly and without explanation, The Age reported.
Last week the Southern NSW Health District announced her appointment as CEO, replacing Dr Max Alexander, who resigned last November at the end of his five-year contract.
Thomastown Labor MP Bronwyn Halfpenny told the Whittlesea Leader she was glad Ms Compton was gone and said the administration had to take responsibility for falling performance.
“I hope that the new leadership in there is one step in the right direction to address some of these major problems,” she said.
But the Southern NSW Health District is standing behind her appointment to the top job.
“During the selection process Ms Compton provided the Southern NSW Local Health District Board with a full and transparent account of her previous employment, including her time at Victoria’s Northern Health,” a spokesman said.
“As part of that process, the Board conducted a thorough and independent assessment of Ms Compton, her achievements in previous positions, and her suitability for the role of chief executive.
“Her extensive professional background and managerial qualifications are highly regarded and provide a solid foundation for her to successfully lead the Southern NSW Local Health District.”
He said she was selected from a strong field of candidates from Australia and overseas and the Health District was fortunate to attract a chief executive of her calibre.
Ms Compton began her career as a physiotherapist in country NSW before working in the Northern Territory, and then returning to NSW to hold several positions in the former Hunter Health region.
The spokesman said she had extensive experience as a senior executive in Victoria’s acute and subacute health sectors.
Her last major appointment was as CEO of Victoria’s Northern Health.
She previously held senior management roles at Eastern Health where she was the executive director of acute health, a role responsible for the operations of the acute sector including the ED, specialty and general medicine, surgery, and women’s and children’s health.
Ms Compton has held previous CEO roles at Calvary Healthcare Bethlehem and Nepean Rehabilitation Hospital, a private sub-acute facility in Victoria.
She holds a Master of Public Policy as well as qualifications in public administration, physiotherapy and science.
Health District chair Jenny Symonds said her appointment reflected the Board’s confidence in her ability to successfully consolidate and build on the solid foundations created by Dr Alexander.
“Ms Compton brings a wealth of leadership knowledge and strategic capability to the role, including successfully leading numerous Victorian health organisations,” Ms Symons said.
“Ms Compton’s managerial experience will help us to effectively implement new improved ways of keeping people well and out of hospital, and working in partnership with local providers to build innovative programs and services that best suit the needs of the Local Health District.”
Ms Compton will take up her new role on March 30. She will help oversee the $120 million redevelopment of Goulburn Base Hospital.