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“It’s a bit of a concern when I saw there were a number of reports of inquiries or complaints because of rural councils,” said Orb.
McFadyen also revealed her findings on several new municipal conflict of interest cases, including one in which the mayor of a northern hamlet participated in hiring her cousin. The cousin then became a councillor, creating a situation so convoluted that McFadyen was unable to recommend a clear course of action to resolve it.
She considered complaints relating to long-term care homes, including one in which a home charged a resident what she viewed as uncompetitive prices for medication.
The resident had been paying just $45.40 per month for medication. But the care home charged an average of $113.31 per month for the same medication.
McFadyen noted the resident was unable to easily get medication elsewhere, creating what she called a “captive market.”
She acknowledged the SHA had conducted a review, but warned that it did not address the main issue of whether residents are being charged competitive prices.
She made two recommendations to the SHA calling for better procurement policies, both of which were accepted.