EDMONTON – “Health Minister Fred Horne must step in and order Alberta Health Services to stop cutting front-line services and closing seniors beds in light of out-of-control expense claims at AHS,” said AUPE President Guy Smith.
Yesterday’s report of the Auditor General showed Alberta Health Services spent $100-million on travel and other expense claim and purchasing card expenses from April 2011 to August 2012.
“That’s almost $6-million a month on things ranging from travel, to Calgary Flames tickets to video games,” said Smith. “That money could have done a lot to improve front-line health services to Albertans.”
“$6.1 million in travel expenses were paid out of the public purse for private contractors who weren’t even required to submit receipts,” said Smith. “It would be laughable if it wasn’t so serious.
“Meanwhile, the government and AHS are cutting home care, eliminating 48 Licensed Practical Nursing positions at Capital Care and closing an entire seniors’ unit at Edmonton’s Royal Alexandra Hospital, eliminating another 40 health-care positions,” said Smith. “We’ve been notified there will be more employers. It’s outrageous.”
“The Auditor General did his job by exposing AHS’s spending on expenses. It’s Minister Horne’s job to rein in that spending and put the money to use on real health services.
“The thought of $100-million tax dollars spent on AHS expenses while health services and jobs are disappearing is enough to make you lose sleep at night,” Smith said.
For more information:
Guy Smith, AUPE President: 780-930-3301 or 780-265-2294 (cell)
Tyler Bedford, AUPE Communications: 780-930-3406