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Opinion

Lloyd Burr Live: Thank you Dr Ash, you've done a brilliant job

I want to talk about Ashley Bloomfield

Credit where credit is due - he's done a pretty exemplary job since he took the role in June 2018. 

He's had the most tumultuous 4 years as director general of health, navigating a Measles outbreak, the eruption of Whakari/White Island, the terrorist attacks in Christchurch, and of course a global pandemic. 

No other health system boss has ever had to deal with as much as he has had to. 

He fronted daily press conferences and health updates. 

He had to prepare a health system that was woefully understaffed and under-resourced after a decade of under-funding. 

He dealt with numerous small outbreaks, and controlled them. 

And when Delta came, he had to scramble a vaccine rollout that got us to 90 percent vaccinated in 4 months. 

With COVID likely to dominate his job for the foreseeable future - as well as the biggest overhaul the health system's ever seen on the horizon - it's no wonder he's decided it's time. 

As a public servant, he's used to being behind the scenes - but the events in his tenure saw him thrust into the limelight and the media spotlight, all of which he handled with professionalism. 

Yes, he gets a whopping pay packet, but he's done a brilliant job given the circumstances, and he deserves a big thank you for it - not to be vilified. 

So Dr Bloomfield, thank you, and enjoy your next challenge.