Susan Pearce appointed to lead NSW Health
Premier Dominic Perrottet, Health Minister Brad Hazzard, and Minister for Regional and Mental Health Bronnie Taylor today announced Susan Pearce as the new Secretary of NSW Health.
Ms Pearce succeeds Elizabeth Koff, who is leaving NSW Health in early March to take up an opportunity in the private sector.
“Ms Koff has helped guide the state’s health system through a once in a century pandemic displaying strong leadership when it was needed most,” Mr Perrottet said.
“During her time as Secretary Ms Koff delivered a number of key reforms, which have further strengthened our world-class health service.
“Having worked closely with Ms Pearce throughout the pandemic there is no doubt she is the right person to take NSW Health forward through the challenges we will face emerging from the pandemic.
“Ms Pearce is highly talented, has a very successful track record, and is passionate about healthcare. I look forward to continuing to work closely with Ms Pearce as NSW delivers high-quality, patient-centred care to people right across our State.”
Ms Pearce is well placed to take on the role of Secretary, having been Deputy Secretary of NSW Health for the past six years. During the past two years, she has had a key leadership role, leading the operational aspects of NSW Health’s COVID-19 response, including its testing clinics and vaccination program.
Beginning her career in NSW Health as registered nurse in Broken Hill, Ms Pearce was previously the state’s Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer and Deputy Secretary for Patient Experience and System Performance.
Mr Hazzard paid tribute to Ms Koff and congratulated Ms Pearce on her appointment.
“I again thank Elizabeth Koff for her commitment over three decades to delivering the very best health care possible for NSW residents. I wish her a happy and successful move to the private sector,” Mr Hazzard said.
“I now look forward to the next phase of development of the amazing care provided by NSW Health staff as Susan Pearce takes on this enormous responsibility and I congratulate her on her appointment as Secretary.
“Having worked closely with Ms Pearce for more than five years I know she brings vast experience, capacity, and leadership skills developed out of her years first as a nurse and later in senior management roles, all of which makes her well suited to the leadership of Australia’s biggest and best public health system.”
Ms Taylor welcomed the appointment and said Ms Pearce would bring strong leadership to NSW Health.
“Ms Pearce is an excellent choice to lead NSW Health as we move into the recovery phase of this pandemic,” Ms Taylor said.
“Ms Pearce played a key role in the recovery response to the bushfires, including supporting the mental health response on the ground.
“From one regional nurse to another I can think of no better person to continue the strong legacy that Elizabeth Koff will leave when she moves into her new role outside government.”