TORONTO - Critics are wondering why Ontario has been spending
hundreds of millions of dollars to create electronic health records
when the province already has a computer-based system in place.


electronic Child Health Network stores health records and links more
than 100 hospital sites across Ontario, but there's a catch: it's only
for people aged 19 and under.


Opposition health critic Christine
Elliott wonders why the Liberal government spent $650 million so far
trying to develop electronic health records when there's a system that
could be adapted.


She says instead of trying to reinvent the wheel, the government should be looking at systems that are already in place.

Leader Andrea Horwath says the government should have used the
children's network as a model instead of hiring consultants at $3,000 a
day to come up with electronic health records.

EHealth says the
Children's Health Network is an important part of a complete Electronic
Health Record system, but is far too small to be used by all health
care providers.

A health ministry spokesman says the Children's
Health Network may be used as a base model, but adds the project is
immense and can't be completed simply by plugging in the smaller