Provincial auditor says improvements needed in several areas

Saskatchewan produces the second highest amount of waste per capita and has the lowest diversion rates in Canada.

That’s according to the Provincial Auditor’s Report released on Tuesday

Judy Ferguson says the Environment Ministry has set a provincial waste reduction goal to reduce the amount of waste per person by 30 per cent from 2014 to 2030 and by 50 per cent by 2040.
The report found that unlike some other Canadian jurisdictions, the Ministry doesn’t use material-specific targets to help determine whether the waste diversion recycling programs are contributing to their goals.

Ferguson suggests the Ministry needs to have a better understanding of what is entering landfills to help set realistic, material-specific targets for each regulated program.

The report also says that eHealth must do a better job of controlling and monitoring IT network access, and testing disaster plans.

Ferguson notes that last December, eHealth experienced a ransomware attack, but was able to recover its IT systems from backups made prior to the attack.

The recovery took some time, and a number of IT systems were unavailable for awhile.

She says eHealth has identified 38 critical systems requiring detailed recovery plans, but as of the end of March the recovery testing for any of these systems hadn’t been completed.

The Provincial Auditor also  says 22 Saskatchewan residents waited longer than the best practices benchmark for a colonoscopy in the past year and each was diagnosed with cancer.
Another 12 people waited between 15 and 104 days for their colonoscopy results and were diagnosed with cancer.

Ferguson reports the Colorectal Cancer Screening Program is following best practices in many areas, but more work is needed to improve participation rates, reduce the wait times for colonoscopies and to determine a specified timeframe for providing results.

Ferguson explains that the program targets 50 to 74 year olds, and in the last two years, the average is about 47 per cent in this province.

She says, “Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in Saskatchewan, and approximately 90 per cent of colorectal cancers can be prevented or successfully treated if caught early.”

The Auditor’s Report reviews 19 government ministries, 36 pension and benefit plans and special purpose funds and 36 health care affiliates.

(CJWW)

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