Refusal to Answer Question on Contradictory Statements Reiterates Need for Ethics Investigation into Pure North: Wildrose

EDMONTON, AB: A new report from CBC about the relationship between Alberta Health and Pure North, which has a trial program prescribing high doses of vitamin D, is calling into question Health Minister Sarah Hoffman’s credibility and reiterates the need for a review of the file by the Ethics Commissioner and the Auditor General, the Wildrose Official Opposition said.

When questioned in the Legislature by Wildrose Shadow Health Minister Tany Yao about vitamin D and Pure North, Hoffman stated that trials involving high doses of vitamin D were something that “happened under the previous government” and “if that happened, which I have no specific knowledge of, that would be very concerning, and we would want make sure that we follow it up appropriately”.

“The Health Minister has an obligation to be publicly accountable for these treatments using high levels of vitamin D under her watch. If Pure North is truly doing legitimate research, the Health Minister must be aware, and it must be in accordance with Alberta Health’s ethical standards,” Yao said. “Her previous statements on the matter clearly show that she misled the Legislature about her knowledge on this topic, or that she is not on top of her files. Either option is very concerning and must be clearly explained publicly.”

The refusal of the Health Minister to respond to repeated interview requests on the topic shows the department is not forthcoming on an issue that can impact the wellbeing of Albertans, and demonstrates how important the reviews by the Ethics Commissioner and Auditor General are.

“Albertans deserve to have a Minister who is forthcoming with information, and that is clearly not the case right now,” Wildrose Shadow Democracy and Accountability Minister Nathan Cooper said. “Wildrose will continue to be supportive of ongoing reviews on this matter, including the Ethics Commissioner review launched at our request, so that the truth can be revealed.”