Health Secretary Vaughan Gething has named Mark Polin as the new chair of Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board. Mr Polin will leave his current post as Chief Constable of North Wales this summer. His appointment was announced as one of a series of further steps to tackle problems at the health board, which is in Welsh Government special measures.
Mr Gething was responding to the publication of a report on conditions at the Tawel Fan mental health ward at Ysbyty Glan Clwyd. Although less critical than an earlier report it still identified failings and shortcomings.
I continue to be very clear with the health board about the need to increase the pace of improvements and to deal with issues that are again highlighted in this report, and I will set out my expectations for that improvement. I will today publish a special measures improvement framework that sets out the milestones and expectations for the health board for the next 18 months in leadership and governance, strategic and service planning, mental health and primary care, including out-of-hours services.
Mark Polin has been a police officer for 35 years, serving in the City of London, Gwent and Gloucestershire before becoming North Wales Chief Constable in 2009. He says he intends to set a "clear path" for getting Betsi Cadwaladr out of special measures.
My research prior to selection served to highlight the scale of the challenge we face but I am confident that through clear direction, leadership, joint endeavour and good governance - coupled with the continuing support and scrutiny of Welsh Government - the necessary improvements can be achieved. I would hope my public sector experience, my knowledge of and commitment to the communities of north Wales and my existing relationships with partner organisations will also assist us all to move forward together.