High-flying Assistant Deputy Minister new supervisor at Hôtel Dieu hospital – appointment opens door to Ombudsman

Ken Deane has arrived back in Windsor and has begun work as a government-appointed supervisor of Hôtel Dieu Hospital.

The former CEO of Hôtel Dieu from 2002-2004, Deane made a number of unpopular cuts to eliminate a $15 million deficit at the hospital.

Deane’s public service salary hidden in London Health Sciences budget

Working as a Deputy Minister for Health System Accountability and Performance since 2008, Deane was among the list of high-flying Ontario civil servants who had their salaries channelled through public hospitals to skirt civil service pay guidelines. In Deane’s case, his salary of $505,537 for 2009 was paid from London Health Sciences Centre, where he had previously served as CEO. The salary guidelines for deputy ministers are $220,150.

Deane effectively takes over the power of the board of directs and executive of the hospital. CEO Warren Chant will now report to him.

When the province takes over a public hospital, it opens the door to the Ontario Ombudsman to investigate – powers the Ombudsman has been seeking for all hospitals. Ontario is the only province where the Ombudsman does not have jurisdiction on public hospitals.

Andre Marin wasted no time in getting out a press release January 5th stating he now had the jurisdiction to investigate the Hôtel Dieu. The Ombudsman’s office says it received 220 complaints about hospitals in 2009-2010.

Windsor’s Hôtel Dieu Hospital has been repeatedly in the spotlight over the past five years, from the murder of nurse Lori Dupont to mistaken mastectomies and questionable pathology reports. Deane will be responsible for implementing recommendations from the investigators report into the pathology and surgical errors, including what has been described as the “toxic dysfunctional relationships between the hospital’s administration, board, and physicians.”

Canadian Business News reports that “many are already clamouring over the appointment, questioning how the former CEO is capable of fixing problems that manifested under his watch originally.”

Deane is expected to take a year to do his work at the hospital.

2 responses to “High-flying Assistant Deputy Minister new supervisor at Hôtel Dieu hospital – appointment opens door to Ombudsman

  1. Mr. Deane should NOT be appointed supervisor of Windsor’s Hotel Dieu Grace. Given his track record as a board member of ehealth and his poor work with another hospital it’s a sham to be appointing him as supervisor. His history as CEO there between 2002-2004, creates an inherent bias, it should instead be an appointment of someone who has no history with that hospital.

    On a more important note, Ontario’s Ombudsman is the only one in Canada that does not have jurisdiction to investigate complaints over any of the MUSH sector (Municipalities, Universities, Schools and Hospitals). The only reason he has been given authority over Windsor’s Hotel Dieu Grace, is because the government has taken control of it and appointed a supervisor.

    Bill 131- An Act to Amend the Ombudsman Act to give the Ombudsman power to investigate designated public bodies. Brought forward by the Ontario NDP (Rosario Marchese, NDP) but can only be passed if the Ontario Liberal government takes it up and passes it (as they currently hold the majority of seats).

    Put pressure on your local MPP’s, ask them to support Ombudsman oversight. Sign the petition, you can contact Mr. Marchese’s office through the link below or at the Queen’s Park number: 416-325-9092.

    It is in everybody’s best interest to have oversight over these public institutions, facilities run better when there is regulation through a complaint and resolution process. An ombudsman can provide this.


  2. It’s funny how Deane’s involvement in e-health has been left out of the many biographies that appeared with this appointment. Deane was in fact appointed to the board of e-Health in September 2008 along with MOHLTC wait times lead Dr. Alan Hudson (who resigned his post after the e-health scandal), J. David Livingston (CEO Infrastructure Ontario), Matthew Anderson (now CEO of the William Osler Hospital), and Heather Sherrard (U of Ottawa Heart Institute). For all the publicity surrounding the Broader Public Sector Accountability Act, the absence of jurisdiction for the ombudsman was a glaring omission.

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