EHealth scandal a $1B waste:
We all do pay high taxes and also high prices for fuel, food, transportation. services, phones, internet, cable but also do still receive poor health care and high costs education and all of this is unacceptable.
Opposition calls for Smitherman’s head. Ontario’s opposition parties called Wednesday for the resignation of Energy Minister George Smitherman, saying he must be held accountable for his role in the expense scandal at eHealth Ontario , report slammed the government for allowing eHealth to waste millions on unused computer systems and give out millions more in untendered contracts to consultants. Some of those contracts were doled out when Smitherman was health minister from 2003 to 2008. “The auditor general’s report makes it quite clear that many of the biggest abuses of taxpayers’ money occurred under the watch of minister George Smitherman,” Hudak told reporters. “And George Smitherman has escaped any sanction or any scrutiny by the premier for his role in this affair.”A scathing report into the eHealth Ontario spending scandal has claimed the job of the province’s health minister with its charges that successive governments wasted $1 billion in taxpayer money. Health Minister David Caplan is stepping down because of the report. Children and Youth Services Minister Deb Matthews would take over the health portfolio. The report is damning in its criticism of the way governments have allowed eHealth and its predecessor, Smart Systems for Health, to let spending go out of control with few safeguards to protect tax dollars. And favouritism was shown toward certain companies “without giving other firms a chance to compete were largely true.”
The Ontario people have been robbed by their elected representatives for Billions of dollars and that is just wrong. We need to see people serving jail terms for this and we want to see justice. McGuinty had better see this as we will soon be getting to the point of massive civil demonstrations where we will not only call for the removal of people but the laying of the charges under the criminal code. This has got to the point where the voters are being fleeced by the government appointed heads of boards and such , and when huge sums of money are wasted or improperly spent, there should be charges and not just inquiries. Just the money lost could have guaranteed the pensions of many people and the severance of even more. Instead we wasted this money on all sorts of unnecessary spending and expense accounts that these criminal boards were approving for their members. It is time to force the crown attorneys to do their jobs and charge all of those people and sort it all out in the courts and the sentences should be all the maximum allowed by law in the highest security prisons. Who’s going to repay the money? …. http://www.cbc.ca/canada/toronto/story/2009/10/07/mcguinty-ehealth.html
McCarter’s probe, which went back to 2000, criticized unnamed consulting companies for driving up each other’s fees to artificially create a higher rate for their services and putting too much power in too few hands in awarding of contracts.
The auditor general also slammed unnamed senior health bureaucrats for thwarting his efforts to get investigators into eHealth for a routine audit in the summer of 2008, which didn’t happen until February 2009.
- Some of the consulting costs incurred at eHealth:
- $2,700-a-day consultant, charging $3.26 for a muffin and tea.
- $300-an-hour consultant, charging for reading an article on electronic health records given to her by her husband, another consultant.
- Two consultants serving as vice-presidents and flown regularly from homes in Alberta.
- $1,700-a-day executive assistant.
- Consultants charging to watch an eHealth episode on TVO’s The Agenda and “debriefing” on the Toronto subway.
I hope you’re happy Mr. McGuinty. You have permanently destroyed the Liberal Party in Ontario in a way that is reminiscent of what Bob Rae did to the NDP in Ontario. It will take YEARS for people to forget this. In one fell swoop, you have just handed the Progressive Conservative party the reigns in Ontario for years to come. Well done, Mr. Premier. Well done. This is just disgusting… a Billion dollars recklessly wasted in this economy? When people are suffering more than ever? This is just sickening. if this was the real world the fraud squad would be called in. fraud is fraud , prosecute it.
Cancer Care Ontario broke rules: audit. An internal audit of Cancer Care Ontario shows the provincial agency handed out consultant contracts in some of the same questionable ways as eHealth. It gave a consulting firm $18.7 million in deals over two years, some in the form of so-called “follow-on” agreements, a practice that allowed them to be added on to current contracts without being opened to bids. The audit found the number of follow-ons “excessive” — with at least 26 recorded. “The findings of this audit clearly indicate that the procurement processes, file organization and consistency of documentation require substantial improvement,” the audit says. “It is also apparent that required competitive tendering rules have not been consistently applied for all contracts of significant value.”
Other revelations in the documents included:
- Details of some contracts were ironed out after the deal was done.
- Contracts without tender accounted for 49 per cent of examined contracts for non-capital goods and non-consulting expenses, such as computer equipment, software and equipment rental.
- About $1.6-million worth was paid out over 14 invoices to a company with no written contract.
- Several employees recruited were offered between $17,000-23,000 over the maximum salary range.
- CCO employee files were kept in an unlocked cabinet accessible to unauthorized employees.
- Even though policy forbade paying for parties, Cancer Care paid for two staff picnics, a farewell function and gifts for staff, one holiday party and a baby shower.
I want my money back! Can’t trust the government to be good stewards over the funds they tax from hard working folks, Every dollar to fight cancer is badly needed. To waste a penny is criminal. this was only the tip of the iceberg and that every department in this government needs to be audited. It is only common sense, that the rot permeates this government in many departments.. look at filing criminal charges against those in office that are responsible if criminal activity took place. Their personal bank accounts should be frozen and an investigation into whether they have off shore accounts. We are talking billions of dollars here, with no proper accountability. The same should apply to the people who were, and or are, in charge of companies such as eHealth, and Cancer Care Ontario. This list is going to grow. This is more than disturbing. I’m absolutely blown away. A minister resigns? What about the premier? Today’s revelations involve hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars. I’d lose my job for mismanaging 5 grand. http://www.cbc.ca/canada/toronto/story/2009/10/07/cancer-care-ontario.html
More than a third of Ontario hospitals didn’t balance their books, figures show The Canadian Press - hospitals couldn’t balance their books last year, amounting to a $154-million shortfall, newly released figures show. Sixty-one of the province’s 159 public hospitals, or 38 per cent, were in deficit in the last year… Ontario is behind every other province except British Columbia and Quebec when it comes to hospital funding, according to statistics collected by the Canadian Institute for Health Information. In 2008, Ontario’s funding of hospitals was $1,209 per person, lower than the national average of $1,290.
Many of Ontario’s Crown agencies have forgotten they serve the public – a systemic problem in need of quick attention to prevent further erosion of government services
It is always the same old problem, Professionals, civil and Public servants, Doctors and medical staff continual indifference to the need of others, Almost since my first job after graduating from university I had learned that people are not to be trusted, need to be supervised, and corruption still exists in construction, universities, municipalities, governments, corporations, amongst professionals and politicians as well. Hospital costs savings so the Doctors can get more money, even bad who Doctors fail to define the sicknesses soon enough. Law suits and the related bad publicity have been proven to be one of the most effective weapons in dealing with medical inadequacies.
You know I get a kick out of those lying spin doctors, bad PERSONS who STILL DO say that ALL OF bad people, INCLUDING the ALCOHOLICS, thetax money abusers and their bad supervisors too they can always be rehabilitated, retrained.. and how many millions of them now has this happened to them.. almost none.. a bad apple tends to get worse.. permanent dismissal is what is always needed with the bad persons and their clearly bad superiors who had managed and hired them too.. Bad Ministers as well should be fired ASAP.
NOW WHY IS IT BAD PEOPLE DO NOT CHANGE NEXT BESIDE THE FACT THEY LIKE TO DO BAD THINGS, IT IS ALSO CAUSE THEY FALSELY REFUSE TO ADMIT THE THINGS THEY DO ARE BAD.
TORONTO — Ontario’s health bureaucracy is facing yet another scandal in the wake of more revelations of spending and procurement abuses. In a special report released Wednesday morning, Auditor-General Jim McCarter outlines numerous problems at hospitals and local health integration networks (LHINs), regional funding agencies created by the Liberal government. McCarter points to the questionable hiring of pricey consultants, many of which were sole-sourced and often not required to justify the work they did. The report details a litany of questionable consulting gigs at hospitals, including one, worth $700,000, that was so vague it didn’t even list a detailed description of services needed. Another hospital completely failed to account for a $170,000 consultant contract, and was unable to produce the initial request for proposal, the names and number of firms invited to bid, the bidders’ proposals or any evaluation criteria used to reward the contract. The same firm was retained for another, $430,000 contract. Another hospital paid $8.3 million to one consulting firm for IT services over the past three fiscal years, including $180,000 the firm charges for each consultant it provides. The auditor’s report also details questionable expense claims by hospital consultants. They include one temporary executive who, despite his $275,000 annual salary, also billed the hospital nearly $150,000 for other consultants and administrative support, $14,000 for salary bonuses, foreign exchange fees and a Christmas luncheon, and numerous expensive hotels (including one, in Chicago, where he paid $500 for hotel phone charges) and lavish meals around the world. McCarter also questioned the use of lobbyists by half the 16 hospitals he audited. “We questioned the appropriateness of using government funds to pay lobbyists to help obtain more government funding.”Health minister Deb Matthews reacted swiftly to the report, announcing legislation that will ban the use of lobbyists and open hospitals to freedom of information legislation by January 1, 2012. The auditor-general also found “significant” problems with consultant contracts signed by LHINs The revelations contained in Wednesday’s report are reminiscent of those unearthed last December, when Mr. McCarter detailed spending abuses at eHealth Ontario. That agency, created by the Liberal government, was found to have given millions in sole-sourced contracts to high-priced consultants with few controls and little oversight.“I’m not afraid to say that I’m really sorry this has gone on,” said Matthews. “I don’t think this is acceptable. I don’t think we’ve been as accountable as we ought to have been. We owe it to taxpayers to ensure that every dollar they spend on taxes gets the best possible value.” http://www.nationalpost.com/news/Ontario+Auditor+General+slams+hospital+lobbying/3701093/story.html
The same bad Liberals never learned to do things right and honestly the first time even.. allow their consultant sins to go on falsely.