Health Minister withholds eHealth documents from Ontarians

October 2, 2012

QUEEN’S PARK — Today, Kitchener-Conestoga MPP Michael Harris called on Health Minister Deb Matthews to comply with the Estimates Committee’s request to release all documents relating to the Liberals’ scandal-plagued eHealth system over the last three years.

On July 19, the Estimates Committee passed a motion, moved by Harris, ordering the Health Minister to disclose all eHealth contracts, expenses, invoices and correspondence from 2009 to 2012.

Instead of being transparent with the Ontario public, the Health Minister stated in a letter to the Estimates Committee that she couldn’t provide any documents on eHealth’s business dealings.

“I find it hard to believe that the Minister doesn’t have invoices, contracts, receipts, agreements and correspondence relating to eHealth,” Harris said. “With $2.4 billion spent on the program to date, there has to be some type of documentation in the Ministry, showing where that money was spent.”

The Estimates Committee gave the Health Minister until Aug. 29 to turn over the documents, but the Minister replied almost a month later to say she would only provide correspondence between ministry officials after meeting with the committee and that any other related documents would be provided by eHealth within “420 person-days.”

“With 3,700 civil servants working at the Ministry of Health, we all know these documents could have and should have been provided within the six-week timeframe the Minister was given by the Committee,” Harris said.

“Clearly, the Health Minister believes she’s escaped the spotlight for now,” Harris said in Question Period today. “But I hope she’s not willing to travel down the same path as the Energy Minister, just to stop the release of documents detailing the Liberals’ record of mismanagement and waste.”