Accountant Ron Parks hired to scrutinize Abbotsford private hospital study
Respected forensic auditor will provide impartial analysis, including review of PricewaterhouseCoopers report, says HEU
The Hospital Employees’ Union (CUPE) says it has engaged the high profile forensic accountant Ron Parks to conduct an independent analysis of the controversial consultant’s study undertaken as part of the Campbell government’s efforts to promote the construction of a privately owned and operated hospital in Abbotsford.
Parks is best known for his Bingogate investigation into the affairs of the Nanaimo Commonwealth Holding Society in the mid-1990s. Working with Parks on the private hospital investigation is Calgary-based accountant Derek Malcolm, who also has extensive background as a forensic specialist. Both Parks and Malcolm work for the firm of Kroll Lindquist Avey.
HEU spokesperson Chris Allnutt says like many British Columbians, his union is deeply troubled by the study, which was carried out by the multinational accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). “This whole Abbotsford hospital planning process has been veiled in a thick cloak of secrecy by Victoria and the Fraser Health Authority since day one,” says Allnutt, “without any public scrutiny or input.
“We’re confident that the review we’ve commissioned in the public interest will address these very serious and legitimate concerns.”
As part of the investigation commissioned by HEU, Parks and Malcolm will:
- review the original business case for the hospital replacement project;
- comment on what issues should be part of a thorough, comprehensive comparison of the costs of traditional public finance, ownership and operation versus a so-called private-public partnership; and
- provide detailed analysis and number crunching for the PWC report, in which key data was withheld.
-30- Contact: Mike Old, communications officer, 604-456-7039 or 604-828-6771 (cell), or Stephen Howard, director of communications, 604-456-7037 or 604-240-8524 (cell)