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The present Chief Executive of the Southern Health and Social Care Health Trust, Mairead McAlinden, has been appointed as Chief Executive of South Devon Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust in England.

Following the announcement SDLP Newry and Armagh Assembly Member Dominic Bradley stated that Ms McAlinden has made a tremendous contribution to the management of the Health Service in the area.

He said: “Mairead has demonstrated outstanding leadership during her time managing the Southern Health Trust. Her performance throughout her tenure as Chief Executive has been to a consistently high standard.

“Her departure for a new post in Devon marks a huge loss for healthcare management in the area. I would like to thank Mairead for her hard work and leadership over the years and wish her every success in the future.”

Newry & Mourne District Councillor and former health professional, John McArdle stated: “Ms McAlinden has provided tremendous leadership in the area. She was always helpful, honest and forthcoming. Even though I did not agree with every decision she made, she was always open to discussion and willing to change if the circumstances demanded.

“I too would like to wish her every success. Devon’s gain is the Southern Trust’s loss.”

Also paying tribute to Mairead, Chair of the Trust Mrs Roberta Brownlee said: “It is with great personal regret that I have accepted the resignation of our Chief Executive Mrs Mairead McAlinden.

“I have had the pleasure of working with Mairead for many years most recently as Chair and Chief Executive of this Trust.

“Mairead has many outstanding qualities. She is highly committed, an insightful leader who at every stage has put the needs of our patients and clients first. As well as facing up to the many complex challenges we have in health, she has driven major developments and innovations. It is no coincidence that during her watch this Trust has been recognised as the best performing in Northern Ireland and amongst the best in the UK."

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