Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield has announced that he is retiring.
Bloomfield will step down from his role at the end of July.
Bloomfield signalled late last year to the government that he intended to step down before his term officially ended on 11 June 2023.
In a post on Facebook, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said Bloomfield had been a true public servant in every sense, through his dedication, drive and calmness.
“He has been central to our COVID success as a nation, and he’s done it with humour and grace.
“When we spoke about his decision to move on, he mentioned that he wanted to spend time with his family, and that’s the least we owe him. So kia ora from across the Motu, Dr Bloomfield. We thank you.”
She told reporters this afternoon she could not imagine a better example of a true public servant.
Covid-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins also posted on Facebook after the news was released, acknowledging Bloomfield for being a “reassuring figure” through the pandemic response.
National Party health spokesperson Shane Reti told Midday Report he was thankful to Bloomfield for his service in this role and previous senior leadership roles in DHBs.
An acting director-general will be appointed before Bloomfield finishes on 29 July, 2022.