Replacement for $500k job a mystery after doctor's arrest
WHO will take over Dr Piotr Swierkowski's high-profile job with Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service remains a mystery after he was stood down following his arrest for alleged domestic violence.
He was arrested yesterday and charged with choking, suffocation or strangulation in a domestic relationship and remains in custody pending the conclusion of his bail hearing tomorrow.
Within 30 minutes of the Daily publishing an article about the allegations against the 43-year-old executive director of medical services, SCHHS released a short statement confirming he had been stood down.
According to SCHHS's 2017 annual report, Dr Swierkowski was responsible for all medical practitioners, patient safety, credentialling, education and research - a role with a salary package worth more than half-a-million-dollars.
If the case goes to trial, it could take between nine and 12 months to finalise.
"Today, a Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service senior medical officer has been stood down from duty pending the outcome of legal proceedings," a SCHHS spokesperson said.
"As this matter is now before the courts, no further comment can be made at this time."
SCHHS was contacted for further comment on who would replace Dr Swierkowski in the interim and what the move meant for the future of the hospital, but refused to respond.
Minister for Health Steven Miles was approached for comment, but declined as the matter is before the courts.
During Dr Swierkowski's part-heard bail application in Maroochydore Magistrates Court today duty lawyer Loren Fabian said a project could be in "jeopardy" if he wasn't released, but SCHHS also declined to reveal the nature of the project.
Ms Fabian said her client denied choking his wife but instead claimed he put a dressing gown over her mouth to stop her screaming, without blocking her nose.
She said Dr Swierkowski allowed her to call the police after the incident.