Superboard Concept Should be Scrapped After Alberta Health Board Firings – NSGEU Media Release June 13, 2013

Halifax:  The Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union (NSGEU) says the recent firings of all 10 board members of the Alberta Health Services Board should lead to the immediate scrapping of the whole idea here. The Union was responding today to the Alberta Minister of Health’s statement on Wednesday.

According to NSGEU President Joan Jessome, “This should be the last straw for the Liberal and PC Leaders who are planning to go ahead with one or two Health Boards in Nova Scotia if either of them were to be elected.  Neither of them has yet provided any details for how these Boards will be set up or how they will operate.”

Jessome also noted that the New Brunswick Health Minister announced the sudden replacement of the two Health Authority CEOs on January 24.  These two CEOs had both in place since the number of health authorities were reduced from eight to two.

“Both the New Brunswick and Alberta experiences with Superboards have been problematic from the start in 2008. They have not led to major improvements in the quality of care and cost-efficiencies. If anything, cost overruns, job cuts, and long wait times seem to be worse than ever.”

“Moving to one to two Superboards raises a lot of unanswered questions and the promise of major disruptions that Nova Scotians cannot afford to endure.  Both patients and healthcare workers were the guinea pigs of health reform in the 1990’s and 2000s when the regional health boards and district health authorities were established.  Do we really need to go through those experiences again?”

Jessome concluded: “This dramatic move in Alberta should sound the death knell of even the very idea of having one or two Superboards in this province.   Let’s get on with protecting, strengthening, and expanding public health care here and across the country.”


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