Mater Dei consultant cardiologist under investigation for breach of rules

The health authorities have initiated an investigation into a leading consultant cardiologist at Mater Dei following reports that she has been abusing public service rules and her employment conditions for years, the ministry told The Shift.

The Shift is reliably informed that consultant cardiologist Mariosa Xuereb obtained permission from the government to work on a reduced-hours contract at Mater Dei due to a claimed medical condition.

In reply to questions, a spokesperson for the ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Joseph Chectuti, said his office was unaware of the breach.

Yet he confirmed an investigation was launched as soon as the office received the information from The Shift, and action would be taken if Xuereb was found to be breaching the rules, which dictate that she cannot work privately once she cannot offer her full-time service to public health patients.

The same consultant cardiologist spends her days seeing patients at her private clinic in Ta’ Xbiex, together with her husband, consultant cardiologist Robert Xuereb, who was, until a few weeks ago, the chairman of the cardiology department responsible for ensuring rules were observed by staff.

Health Minister Jo Etienne Abela recently appointed Robert Xuereb CEO of the Foundation for Medical Services (FMS), replacing Carmen Ciantar, who was former health minister Chris Fearne’s choice.

Cardiologist and new FMS CEO Robert Xuereb

The breach of rules irks other professionals at Mater Dei Hospital, who cannot see other patients privately.

A health ministry circular issued by the permanent secretary (DH 50/2024) last month reminded all employees that they cannot conduct private work if they benefit from reduced-hour arrangements.

Quoting the Public Service Management Code (PSMC), the circular stated that “public employees who benefit from modern work practices and work-life balance measures, with the exception of remote working, flexi-time, and flexi-week may not engage in private work or work with voluntary organisations, even after office hours.”

A government memo makes it clear that those on reduced hours cannot do private work.

Xuereb sees patients at ‘The Heart Clinic’ in Ta’ Xbiex every day between 9am and 9pm except Tuesdays and Fridays when she sees outpatients at Mater Dei Hospital between 9am and 1pm.

Sources told The Shift that “everyone at Mater Dei knows that Mariosa Xuereb works privately for long hours” and expressed surprise that the health ministry was unaware of the situation.

Efforts to reach Xuereb at her clinic in Ta’ Xbiex proved futile, as the receptionist always replied that Xuereb was seeing patients.

Several patients who spoke to The Shift confirmed that they had been seen by Xuereb several times at her clinic in Ta’ Xbiex in the past months. Some complained that they were given appointments at inappropriate times, including after 10pm.

Mariosa Xuereb and her husband, Robert, own the’ Heart Clinic’ in Abate Rigord Street.

The Shift reported that Robert Xuereb insisted on keeping his chairmanship at the cardiology department and his new position at the FMS on a package of €122,000 a year. The ministry did not allow this, so he was replaced by another cardiologist.

Robert Xuereb was still allowed to keep his private practice and continue to see patients at Mater Dei.

                           

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Pierre Micallef
Pierre Micallef
1 month ago

Wow! Even our educated professionals are disloyal in this country? Amazing!!

Joseph Tabone Adami
Joseph Tabone Adami
1 month ago

Educated by whom? And certainly professional in their disloyalty!

Tony Debono
Tony Debono
1 month ago

And then he had the cheek to be instrumental in kicking out our very dear Profs Albert Fenech when this very special man had saved so many lives. All in order to take his post at mdh. Shame on you. Bought by stolen money.

Peterb
Peterb
1 month ago
Reply to  Tony Debono

The same Prof Fenech who was instrumental in giving authenticity to the Vitals debacle?

Gee Mike
Gee Mike
1 month ago

What do they do with all this money? They are probaby making at least half a million a year between husband and wife, with no time to enjoy life. Greed is such an awful desease.

Last edited 1 month ago by Gee Mike
D M Briffa
D M Briffa
1 month ago
Reply to  Gee Mike

I think you will find that for people like these the mere act of building a mountain of money is their idea of enjoyment. Not that different from hunters who shoot harmless wildlife for ‘sport’. It takes all kinds, unfortunately.

S. Camilleri
S. Camilleri
1 month ago

I did say that this guy (and now his wife too!) wanted it all. Greedy.

Joseph
Joseph
1 month ago

More hniezer

adriang
adriang
1 month ago

If Pigging Out is very much active at the very top of the Government, what does one expect at lower levels?

Marita Gerd
Marita Gerd
1 month ago

Apologies for not being on topic but here’s what’s wrong with Joseph Muscat, written by himself yesterday on facebook:

Weġibthom li l-awtoritajiet messhom bagħtu għalija u kont ngħaddijhom (sic), mhux qabdu u ressquni l-Qorti.
Issa joqgħodu jistennew u dawn il-provi nippreżentahom meta u kif nagħżel jien.

No Joseph Muscat, the accused cannot order anyone, least of all the authorities, to wait. The accused can’t present his proof (if any) when and how he chooses at his whim. The accused has to present his proof only when he is ordered to do so by the Court.

Why does Joseph Muscat keep expecting preferential treatment?

Last edited 1 month ago by Marita Gerd
G Bezzina
G Bezzina
1 month ago

Oh boy. And what about those consultants refusing to retire, and the ministry appeasing them, even if they have accumulated heaps of complaints from patients as well as colleagues.

JOSEPH
JOSEPH
1 month ago

Sbieh il-flus hux? Biss ic-certezza hi li hadd ma jgawdihom ghal dejjem!!!

Anthony T Mamo
Anthony T Mamo
1 month ago

Surely the Chairman of the Cardiology Department knew at first hand what his wife is doing. In the words of our previous corrupt prime minister. whoever does not fight corruption is corrupt himself.

Mary
Mary
1 month ago

Not a day goes by without a scandal.

Raymond
Raymond
30 days ago

They manipulate all rules and regulations unscrupulously to pig out all that is humanly possible while the common citizen cannot cope with the increasing prices for daily items!

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