Official who led the Welsh NHS through pandemic to become Wales’s new Permanent Secretary

An official who led the Welsh NHS through the coronavirus pandemic is to become Wales’s most senior civil servant.

NHS Wales chief executive Dr Andrew Goodall will take over as Permanent Secretary after the departure of Dame Shan Morgan.

He will be responsible for 5,000 staff and will be the main policy adviser to First Minister Mark Drakeford.

Dr Goodall (pictured) said: “It is a great honour to take up the role of Permanent Secretary of the Welsh Government.

“I look forward to working with staff across the Civil Service and the wider Welsh public sector workforce.

“There are major challenges ahead, but I am confident that we can rise to them by working together and building on the foundations that Shan has laid over the last five years.”

During the pandemic Dr Goodall has been one of the most visible faces of the Welsh Government, regularly leading televised press conferences.

He has been chief executive of NHS Wales since 2014 and before that was chief executive of Aneurin Bevan University Health Board.

Mr Drakeford said of Dr Goodall: “He has been a leading figure in Welsh public service for many years, so I warmly welcome his appointment to this role.

“I would like to thank Shan for her leadership of the Welsh Civil Service during these most challenging of times and wish her well for the future.”

Dame Shan is to leave next year, at the end of her fixed five-year contract.

She said: “I consider myself extremely fortunate to have worked with such a fantastic group of people on things that have made a huge difference to people in Wales at one of the most challenging times in our history.

“Although much of my time has inevitably been spent fire-fighting, my focus as Permanent Secretary has been to try to develop a more resilient, skilled and capable Civil Service for the future, as well as making the organisation a fairer, more inclusive place to work.

“I wish Andrew all the best and will be working closely with him as he takes up the role.”

Copyright (c) PA Media Ltd. 2021, All Rights Reserved. Picture (c) The Welsh Government.