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About a month ago, I submitted a letter to the Board of Health of the Grey Bruce Health Unit, along with three others. To date, I have not received any answers to the questions posed in that letter.

As a reminder, here are some of the questions to which we ask the board to respond:

1. What approval process did the board employ in signing off on the overtime hours and subsequent overtime payment (approx. $300,000 above base salary) for the Medical Officer of Health (MOH)?

2. How were available overtime funds from the Ministry of Health dispersed within the health unit?

3. Other Health Units reported their MOH overtime hours and pay last year. Why did we find out about ours via the published Sunshine List in March of this year?

4. Why was there such an alarming rate of staff turnover in the management and upper management levels over the past couple of years? Does this loss of experience and leadership concern the board members vis-à-vis public health service delivery?

I will continue to ask for answers to these questions and recommend an independent, external review of current management practices at the Health Unit. A comprehensive review can only serve to improve the health unit’s ability to deliver effective programs and services in our area, now and in the future. The residents of Grey Bruce deserve no less.

Over the past month, I have heard from countless residents, health unit staff (former and current), other local healthcare professionals, union leaders, local councillors and politicians -- all expressing concern about these issues and supporting efforts to get answers. They appreciate the voices that are advocating for transparency and accountability.

I have requested to attend the next Board of Health meeting on May 28; I have yet to hear back confirming my attendance and my ability to ask questions of the board members.

Finally, I wish to publicly thank all the hardworking, diligent healthcare and essential workers in our communities. The successes we have seen so far in our fight against COVID-19 are in no small part due to you. You work tirelessly, day in and day out, and you deserve to be recognized for all you do for us. Thank you.

Cathy Moore Coburn
Georgian Bluffs, Ontario



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