Hospital top receives a quarter of a million euros in redundancy payments after merger flop

This is apparent from research by RTL Z.

Van Ewijk became director of the Slingeland Hospital in Doetinchem in 2015. Under his leadership, the care institution merged a year later with the Streekziekenhuis Koningin Beatrix in Winterswijk, to form Santiz.

Fusion on the rocks

But in January last year, the hospital chief had to leave, after serious unrest had arisen in Winterswijk about the transfer of care to Doetinchem. Not much later, the merger came to an end.

At the end of April 2020, when Van Ewijk’s successor had also left, Santiz announced that he would split up. As a result of the administrative crisis, the hospitals came under stricter supervision of the Health and Youth Care Inspectorate for nine months.

Redemption amount 174,000 euros

The fine print of the hospital’s 2020 annual accounts, which were published with great delay, now show that Van Ewijk did not leave empty-handed.

The failed director received a severance payment of 74,526 euros. He also received six months’ salary after his departure. That cost the hospital 99,800 euros. This brings the total severance package to more than 174,000 euros.

This is remarkable, because under the Standards for Top Incomes Act (WNT), public sector directors are allowed to receive a maximum severance package of 75,000 euros, in principle including continued salary payment after departure.

According to spokeswoman Saskia Steenbergen, Van Ewijk’s severance package has been tested by lawyers and experts from the external accountant and complies with the WNT, which has some exceptions for continued salary payment.

Two more redemption payments

Van Ewijk’s successor Rolf de Folter, who was able to pack his bags within two months, did not leave the hospital without a lump sum payment either. His ultra-short employment contract earned him 53,600 euros in salary, and another 26,800 euros in severance pay.

And the third ex-driver of Santiz, Bijar Altalabani, who left in August last year, also received money. The Santiz branch in Winterswijk – which has been called the Queen Beatrix Regional Hospital since the unbundling – paid him a severance package of 75,000 euros.

health care money

This brings the price tag in lump sum payments as a result of the administrative crisis and the failed merger to a total of more than 275,000 euros. Spokeswoman Steenbergen acknowledges that that money does not end up with the care sector in a response.

“But they are reimbursements that have been agreed in this way and comply with the Top Income Standards Act. It is a result of the merger perils, which we have left behind. It is now important that the hospitals have returned to calmer waters.”

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