NHS chief executive pockets second highest public sector salary

By Susie Sell, 01 June 2010

The chief executive of the NHS has the second highest salary in the public sector and earns almost twice as much as the prime minister, a list of top earning public sector staff reveals.

The list of 171 public workers earning more than £150,000 places David Nicholson (pictured), who earns between £255,000 and £259,999, in second place - just behind top earner John Fingelton, chief executive if the Office of Fair Trading.

Ten other DoH workers were also in the list, including:

  • Sir Liam Donaldson, former chief medical officer (£205,000 - £209,999)
  • Christine Connelly, chief information officer (£200,000 - £204,999)
  • Gabriel Scally, regional director of public health (£200,000 - £204,999)
  • David Salisbury, director of immunisation (£175,000 - £179,999)
  • Sir Hugh Taylor, permanent secretary (£155,000 - £159,999).

Click here for the full list of high earners

David Cameron recently announced he would take a pay packet of £142,500.

This is the first time a comprehensive list of the public sector workers earning more than £50,000 has been released. Alongside this, the government has also revealed plans to set up a Public Sector Transparency Board, which will over see its transparency agenda.  

Francis Maude, Cabinet Office minister who is to chair the new Public Sector Transparency Board, said the list would ‘let light into the corridors of power'. 

He said: ‘By being open and accountable we can start to win back people's trust. Openness will not be comfortable for us in government; but it will enable the public to hold our feet to the fire.

‘Transparency is key to our efficiency drive, and will enable the public to help us to deliver better value for money in public spending.'

He added that the list of top earning public sector worker is ‘just the start'.

‘We are determined to set an example for the wider public sector, and to create a ‘right to data' as a core part of government business,' he said.

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