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Rare Disease Working Group report gathering dust a year after delivery date

October 31, 2017

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 31st, 2017 

Rare Disease Working Group report gathering dust a year after delivery date

Minister admits to sitting on report for “several months”…

QUEEN’S PARK – A year-and-a-half after the Minister of Health rallied the Liberal troops to defeat MPP Michael Harris’ motion for a rare disease strategy in favour of a government behind-closed-doors ‘working group’, the group’s “work” remains a mystery as its report gathers dust on the Minister’s shelf.

While Minister’s staff initially reported that they had been “verbally briefed” on the “working group’s” interim report that was due in fall 2016, MPP Michael Harris got a different story when he pressed the Minister for details.

“Indeed we have received the report of the working group,” Minister Hoskins admitted in Estimates Committee. “We’ve had it certainly for several months.”

When asked why it has taken so long to release the report findings, the Minister indicated that, “part of it is technical.”

Following the committee hearings, Harris noted that he warned of the potential for delays and lack of transparency when the Minister rejected the motion to Treat Rare Disease in 2016.

“The problem is as this Minister continues to drag heels on a supposed working group process, the Select Committee could have already completed its job submitted recommendations to provide actual action for those who have suffered alone, without any type of government support for too long,” said Harris. “The fact that he’s been sitting on this report for ‘several months’ only extends that suffering and prevents those impacted from receiving the treatments they deserve.”

Harris says that despite the ongoing government stalling, he’s hopeful the continued campaign of pressure through his http://treatraredisease.ca/ website and at Queen’s Park will help sufferers move closer to the supports they require.

Please see Minister admit to holding back report here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ckYT5DF2Rc

Please find the entire q and a at Estimates here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=22PtfhyUPoM&t=398s

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For further information contact: Rob Willett | 519-404-4052 | rob.willett@pc.ola.org |