The cost of executive staff in ACT's public health system has blown out by more than $1 million in the last year, partly due to the decision to split ACT Health.
In the lead-up to the restructure of ACT Health, Health Minister Meegan Fitzharris said the split would happen within the existing health budget, and staffing budgets would not increase.
But analysis of current executive staff numbers shows a significant increase in executives' pay bill compared to this time last year.
The government has not said where the money to expand the executive team was diverted from and says some of the extra positions are unrelated to the split.
ACT Health split into to distinct organisations in October last year: the ACT Health Directorate and Canberra Health Services.
The directorate looks after governance of Canberra's health services while Canberra Health Services oversees Canberra Hospital and the clinical delivery of services.
The restructure means each organisation's head is paid the same as the director general of the old ACT Health.
Freedom of information documents reveal there are currently 45.4 executive level positions funded across the two new departments.
The cost of executive level pay, based on funded positions, now sits on $9,700,036.
Last financial year, according to answers to questions on notice provided to the Opposition, executive pay hit $8,417,000 with 41.4 positions.
Taking away the cost of an executive pay rise made by the determination tribunal last year, the cost of extra executive staff this financial year still exceeds $1 million.
The number of executive positions in ACT's public health system has more than doubled since 2014, when there were 21 executive positions.
The answers from questions on notice also revealed ACT Health was the only directorate to have a significant increase in executive positions last financial year.
The executive health positions pay a base salary of between $149,000 and $364,398 per year.
An ACT Health Directorate spokeswoman said since the transition both departments had restructured their executive positions to reflect the needs of the organisations.
It said some of the extra staff were not needed because of the split but other initiatives such as the new Office of Mental Health.
"There have also been other priorities post transition, which have required new executive positions that are not related to the transition," she said. "For example, the new coordinator-general for the Office for Mental Health and Wellbeing and the new executive branch manager for the implementation of the workplace culture review.
"It was always made clear during the transition process that the organisations would continue to refine and stabilise their structure post 1 October 2018."
An executive pay increase of these proportions would pay for more nurses who are desperately needed.Opposition Health Spokeswoman Vicki Dunne
Opposition Health Spokeswoman Vicki Dunne said it was inevitable the new hospital structure would become too top heavy.
"At a time when we are struggling with chronic staff shortages, an executive pay increase of these proportions would pay for more nurses who are desperately needed," she said.