A Department of Health director who led programmes on efficiency and procurement has announced his resignation.

HSJ understands that commercial director Pat Mills will leave the department at the end of this month, after handing in his resignation in October. He has been in the post since October 2014.

It comes as the DH is in the process of recruiting a chief commercial officer, looking for applicants with a track record in  biopharmaceuticals or a related industry.

The new role will command a basic salary of £220,000, making it one of the highest paid in the department. The recruitment process is ongoing.

Procurement experts predicted that Mr Mills would be leave the DH after the job advert for the chief commerical officer was published.

The DH has declined to comment.