Ontario's Hospitals Propose Even Greater Transparency

Proposal would see Freedom of Information legislation extended to
    hospital sector

TORONTO, Oct. 27 /CNW/ - Today, the Ontario Hospital Association (OHA) has taken a major step to promote public sector transparency and accountability by proposing that the Government of Ontario extend the province's Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIPPA) to the hospital sector. The OHA represents Ontario's 155 public hospitals.

"While Ontario's hospitals are extraordinarily transparent and accountable, their justifiable pride in past achievements should not prevent us from moving to become even more transparent as a sector tomorrow," said Tom Closson, OHA President and CEO.

Ontario's hospitals are already the most transparent and accountable in Canada. They participate in comprehensive accreditation processes, are subject to Hospital Service Accountability Agreements, and are audited on a regular basis by Ontario's Auditor General. They also provide extensive public data on their finances, patient safety performance and patient satisfaction through consumer-oriented websites like myhospitalcare.ca. As important, Ontario's hospitals either initiated or played a key role in shaping every one of these activities.

"Ontario's hospitals value their communities' confidence and trust, and our proposal to have FOIPPA apply to our sector can only help bolster public trust and confidence in hospitals and the broader public sector," Closson added.

Last week, the OHA's Board of Directors met and unanimously agreed to propose that the Government of Ontario extend FOI laws to the hospital sector. Letters have been sent this morning to Ontario Minister of Health and Long-Term Care Deb Matthews and Information and Privacy Commissioner Ann Cavoukian to inform them of this proposal, and to request meetings to discuss next steps.

The Ontario Hospital Association (OHA) is the voice of Ontario's public hospitals. Founded in 1924, the OHA uses advocacy, education and partnerships to build a strong, innovative and sustainable health care system for all Ontarians.

For further information: To arrange an interview with Tom Closson, please contact: Amy Ouellette, OHA Public Affairs, (416) 205-1433