Media Contacts

Ministry of Health

250 952-1887 (media line)


Interim actions the Ministry of Health is directing the PHSA to take

Regarding tenant improvements at Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) headquarters on 1333 West Broadway:

  • Direct the PHSA that no further planning or spending of internal capital is to occur unless expressly approved by the Ministry of Health. This directive is to stay in place until such time that the Ministry of Health provides updated direction to health authorities around the appropriate management of internal capital.
  • Direct the associate deputy minister, corporate services, to review and refresh any and all policy or guidance documents issued to health authorities with respect to internal capital planning.

Regarding PHSA’s decisions related to executive-level staffing, adequacy of continuity/transition plans and severance/salary continuance:

  • Direct the PHSA to eliminate the chief of staff function no later than Dec. 11, 2020.
  • Direct the PHSA to not make any further decisions regarding the hiring or dismissal of members of its senior executive team without the approval of the deputy minister of health. This direction will remain in place until March 31, 2021.

Regarding catered meals for staff and executive:

  • Direct the associate deputy minister to co-ordinate a review of the business meeting expense policies for the PHSA and each regional health authority and to provide recommendations for revised policies that will ensure business meeting expenses are reasonable for a taxpayer-funded organization and consistent across health authorities, acknowledging variance of cost across locations and regions.

Regarding the purchase of problematic personal protective equipment:

  • Direct the deputy minister of health to hire an independent third-party advisor to provide a report to the deputy minister no later than Jan. 15, 2021, that:
    • fully clarifies the PHSA CEO’s role in all aspects of the transaction with Luminarie, a health-care product distribution company;
    • reviews concerns raised about the appropriateness of the decisions made to dismiss members of the PHSA’s executive team and chief internal auditor; and
    • provides other information, advice or recommendations, as appropriate, that will help restore public confidence in the PHSA and its leadership.
  • John Bethel, national health care leader, Ernst & Young, is recommended as the advisor based on his leadership in health-care practice nationally and his experience with health-care transformation in B.C.