Hywel Dda University Health Board chief Trevor Purt has been appointed as Chief Executive of Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board and expects to take up the post in June this year.

Chairman Chris Martin announced his intention to stand down in the summer a few months ago.

Both men have come in for sustained criticism from campaigners over the far reaching changes to local health services in the area, including the closure of inpatient beds at Cardigan Hospital.

It means there will be new faces at the top as the Cardigan integrated care project enters its final and critical phase.

During his time in West Wales, Mr Purt has overseen significant new developments including the Front of House Scheme at Bronglais Hospital, the new Urgent Care Centre and Renal Unit at Withybush Hospital, the Breast Care Centre and Research Centre at Prince Philip Hospital and the Clinical Decisions Unit at Glangwili Hospital.

As the first chief executive officer of the new integrated health board he had to tackle the challenge of providing safe, sustainable services across the three counties and a major services consultation. He was also instrumental in securing the health board university status.

He joined Hywel Dda University Health Board in September 2009.

“I am sad to leave as I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in the University Health Board but feel the time is right for new challenges in North Wales.

“We have come a long way in the last 4½ years and there is still more to do to ensure that Hywel Dda has the right services in the right place to provide the very best healthcare.

“I have full faith in my executive directors, the wider management and clinical teams and Karen Howell who will be interim chief executive officer to move forward to ensure our services continue to develop.

“These have not been the easiest of times and I want to personally thank all staff for their dedication and commitment – you are the university health board’s greatest asset.”

Chris Martin, Chair of the University Health Board said: “Trevor was the first chief executive officer of the new integrated health board and has successfully lead the organisation through some difficult times. During his time we have seen a significant improvement in quality and performance due in no small measure to his leadership. We are sorry to see him leave but wish him well in his new role.”