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Request for communications between the Ministry of Health and the Medical Council of NZ relating to Covid19 2020-21

Robin Benson made this Official Information request to Ministry of Health

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From: Robin Benson

Dear Ministry of Health,

This is an official request for information pursuant to the Official Information Act 1982 (Act).

Please provide all communications for the period 1 January 2020 to date between the Ministry of Health and the Medical Council of New Zealand (MCNZ), Chair, board and leadership concerning Covid19 policy, MCNZ expectations of doctors and any other discussion, information or matters relating to Covid19.

I confirm that I meet the requirements of the Act in making this request.

Should you require evidence concerning my meeting requirements pursuant to section 12 of the Act please respond without delay outlining:

(a) what evidence you require and an email address to which such information can be sent, and

(b) the genuine and reasonable grounds for requiring such evidence.

Yours faithfully,

Robin Benson

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From: OIA Requests


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Kia ora Robin,

 

Thank you for your request for official information received on 10
September 2021 for:

 

"Please provide all communications for the period 1 January 2020 to date
between the Ministry of Health and the Medical Council of New Zealand
(MCNZ), Chair, board and leadership concerning Covid19 policy, MCNZ
expectations of doctors and any other discussion, information or matters
relating to Covid19.”

 

The Ministry's reference number for your request is: H202112131.

 

As required under the Official Information Act 1982, the Ministry will
endeavour to respond to your request no later than 8 October 2021, being
20 working days after the day your request was received.

 

Due to the COVID-19 global pandemic response, the Ministry is experiencing
significantly higher volumes of queries and requests for information. If
we are unable to respond to your request within this time frame, we will
notify you of an extension of that time frame.

 

If you have any queries related to this request, please do not hesitate to
get in touch.

 

Ngâ mihi

 

OIA Services

Government Services

Office of the Director-General

Ministry of Health

E: [1][email address]

 

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From: OIA Requests


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Kia ora Robin,

 

Thank you for your request for official information, received on 10
September 2021 for:

 

" Please provide all communications for the period 1 January 2020 to date
between the Ministry of Health and the Medical Council of New Zealand
(MCNZ), Chair, board and leadership concerning Covid19 policy, MCNZ
expectations of doctors and any other discussion, information or matters
relating to Covid19."

 

We are contacting you in accordance with section 18B of the Official
Information Act 1982 (the Act) as your request, as it is currently worded,
is for a very large volume of information. Your request may be refused
under section 18(f) of the Act as the information requested cannot be made
available without substantial collation or research.

 

If it is possible for you to narrow the scope of your request by selecting
a more specific timeframe for your request, we may be able to provide you
with information.

 

We look forward to receiving your response.

 

 

Ngā mihi,

 

OIA Services

Government Services

Office of the Director-General

Ministry of Health

E: [1][email address]

 

 

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1. mailto:[email address]

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From: Robin Benson

Dear OIA Requests,

Thank you for your response.

Please note that I have already restricted my request to the Chair, Board and leadership in an effort to reduce the scope of my request.

You may further refine my request to consider communications:
(i) for the timeframe to the period 1 August 2020 to 1 September 2021, and
(ii) between the Ministry of Health or Director General of Health on one side, and any of the MCNZ Chair, deputy chair, CEO, deputy CEO, and Registrar, on the other.

Yours sincerely,

Robin Benson

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From: OIA Requests

Kia ora Robin,

Thank you for your reply. Unfortunately the scope of this request is still be too large. I've had a talk to the team here about what a manageable scope for this request would be.

Would you be interested in the following information? This is something we can provide you.

“Formal correspondence between the Director-General of Health and Medical Council of New Zealand from 1 August 2020 to 1 September 2021 concerning information or matters relating to COVID-19.”

Thanks,

OIA Services
Government Services
Office of the Director-General
Ministry of Health
E: [email address]

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From: Robin Benson

Dear OIA Requests,

Thank you for the quick response.

It is a little hard to understand that given the size of email and texts, as a the dominant forms of correspondence, that this is so huge. It is surprising that so much correspondence exists.

I would be comfortable with the following:

"Correspondence between the Minister of Health and Director-General of Health, and the Medical Council of New Zealand from 1 August 2020 to 1 September 2021 concerning information or matters relating to COVID-19.”

I trust that this will be acceptable. If not maybe you could provide an indication of what you are referring to in terms of "too large" and we can work from there.

Yours sincerely,

Robin Benson

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From: OIA Requests


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Kia ora Robin,

 

I have been advised we can respond to this request. However, the Ministry
of Health is unable to provide responses on behalf of ministers. Also, the
Minister of Health (Minister Little) would most likely not hold any
information in scope of this request. Rather, if correspondence between a
minister and the MCNZ  regarding COVIDI-19 does exist, it would be with
the Minister for COVID-19 Response (Minister Hipkins).

 

Could you let me know if you would like me to transfer this part of your
request to the Minister for COVID-19 Response or are you happy to contact
the Minister Directly?

 

 

Thanks,

 

OIA Services

Government Services

Office of the Director-General

Ministry of Health

E: [1][email address]

 

 

------------------------------------------------------------------------

From: Robin Benson <[2][FYI request #16701 email]>
Sent: Friday, 24 September 2021 11:32
To: OIA Requests <[3][email address]>
Subject: Re: FW: Refinement of your request for official information (ref:
H202112131)

 

Dear OIA Requests,

Thank you for the quick response.

It is a little hard to understand that given the size of email and texts,
as a the dominant forms of correspondence, that this is so huge. It is
surprising that so much correspondence exists.

I would be comfortable with the following:

"Correspondence between the Minister of Health and Director-General of
Health, and the Medical Council of New Zealand from 1 August 2020 to 1
September 2021 concerning information or matters relating to COVID-19.”

I trust that this will be acceptable. If not maybe you could provide an
indication of what you are referring to in terms of "too large" and we can
work from there.

Yours sincerely,

Robin Benson

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From: Robin Benson

Good Morning OIA Requests,

> I have been advised we can respond to this request.

Thank you. Please proceed in respect of the Ministry of Health.

> However, the Ministry
> of Health is unable to provide responses on behalf of ministers. Also, the
> Minister of Health (Minister Little) would most likely not hold any
> information in scope of this request.

Please transfer this part of the request to the Minister Little.

> Rather, if correspondence between a
> minister and the MCNZ regarding COVIDI-19 does exist, it would be with
> the Minister for COVID-19 Response (Minister Hipkins).
> Could you let me know if you would like me to transfer this part of your
> request to the Minister for COVID-19 Response or are you happy to contact
> the Minister Directly?

Please transfer this part of the request to the Minister Hipkins.

Thank you for your timely and helpful responses.

Yours sincerely,

Robin Benson

Link to this

From: Robin Benson

Dear OIA Requests,

If you could confirm you are proceeding and the relevant sub-requests are with the two recipients that would be appreciated.

Yours sincerely,

Robin Benson

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From: OIA Requests


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Kia ora,

 

Thank you for your request for official information, received on 10
September 2021 requesting:

 

“Please provide all communications for the period 1 January 2020 to date
between the Ministry of Health and the Medical Council of New Zealand
(MCNZ), Chair, board and leadership concerning Covid19 policy, MCNZ
expectations of doctors and any other discussion, information or matters
relating to Covid19.”

 

The Ministry of Health has decided to extend the period of time available
to respond to your request under section 15A of the Official Information
Act 1982 (the Act) as further consultation is required.

 

You can now expect a response to your request on, or before, 9 October
2021.

 

You have the right, under section 28 of the Act, to ask the Ombudsman to
review my decision to extend the time available to respond to your
request.

 

Ngâ mihi 

 

OIA Services

Government Services

Office of the Director-General

Ministry of Health

E: [1][email address]

 

 

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From: Robin Benson

Dear OIA Requests,

The information requested on 10 September 2021 has not been provided within the time limit as defined by the Act and is now well beyond the date by which it must legally be provided.

I note your response which stated "You can now expect a response to your request on, or before, 9 October 2021."

Please provide the requested material without further delay.

Yours sincerely,

Robin Benson

Link to this

From: OIA Requests

Kia ora,

 

Thank you for your Official Information Act (the Act) request. This is
an automatic reply to let you know we received it.

 

Due to the COVID-19 global pandemic response, the Ministry is experiencing
significantly higher volumes of queries and requests for information. We
will endeavour to acknowledge your request as soon as possible. Further
information about COVID-19 can be found on our
website: [1]https://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/dise...

 

In accordance with the Act, we'll let you know our decision within no more
than 20 working days. If you'd like to calculate the timeframe, you can
use the Ombudsman's online calculator
here: [2]http://www.ombudsman.parliament.nz/

If you have any questions while we're processing your request, please let
us know via [3][email address]

 

Ngā mihi  

OIA Services Team  

   

[4]Ministry of Health information releases  

[5]Unite against COVID-19 

 

 

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1. https://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/dise...
2. http://scanmail.trustwave.com/?c=15517&a...
3. mailto:[email address]
4. https://www.health.govt.nz/about-ministr...
5. https://covid19.govt.nz/

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From: Robin Benson

Dear Ministry of Health,

This information is long overdue.

Please provide the information as requested.

Yours faithfully,

Robin Benson

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From: OIA Requests

Kia ora Robin,

We apologise for the long delay in the processing of your request and any inconvenience this may have caused.

We will endeavour to have a response to you by mid-December.

Ngā mihi,

OIA Services
Government Services
Office of the Director-General
Ministry of Health
E: [email address]

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From: Robin Benson

Dear OIA Requests,

This request was made on 10 September 2021.

The current date is 18 November 2021.

Your response is "We will endeavour to have a response to you by mid-December."

Legally you are required to provide the information requested by 26 October 2021 which means you have not fulfilled your obligations as required by law.

Please confirm you will provide the requested information by 5PM 19 November 2021.

Yours sincerely,

Robin Benson

Link to this

From: OIA Requests

Kia ora Robin,

Unfortunately we are not in a position with the information you have requested to be able to release it to you by the time you have specified. We will continue working on your request.

If this does not suit you and you would like to withdraw your request, please let us know.

Ngā mihi,

OIA Services
Government Services
Office of the Director-General
Ministry of Health
E: [email address]

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From: Robin Benson

Dear OIA Requests,

I reaffirm to you that the information is overdue by law, should have been provided long ago, and this information needs to be provided without further delay.

Kindly provide a comprehensive explanation for the considerable delay.

Yours sincerely,

Robin Benson

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From: OIA Requests


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Attachment H202112131 OIA Response.pdf
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Attachment H202112131 Appendix 1.pdf
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Kia ora Robin,

 

Please find attached a letter regarding your request for information. Our
sincere apologies for the delay in providing this response to you.

 

Ngā mihi,

OIA Services

Government Services

Office of the Director-General

Ministry of Health

E: [1][email address]

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From: Robin Benson

Dear OIA Requests,

Thank you for providing the information according to my amended request.

Unfortunately I did not notice the key wording "formal communications" in your suggested amended scope which rather defeats the point of my request. I will make a new request and would ask that you provide the information in accordance with the provisions of the OIA timeframes.

Yours sincerely,

Robin Benson

Link to this

From: OIA Requests

Kia ora,

 

Thank you for your Official Information Act (the Act) request. This is
an automatic reply to let you know we received it.

 

Due to the COVID-19 global pandemic response, the Ministry is experiencing
significantly higher volumes of queries and requests for information. We
will endeavour to acknowledge your request as soon as possible. Further
information about COVID-19 can be found on our
website: [1]https://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/dise...

 

Please be advised that due dates for requests received from 29 November
2021 onwards take into account the following periods:

 

Christmas (25 December 2021)

Summer Holidays (25 December to 15 January)

New Year's Day (1 January 2022)

Day after News Year's Day (2 January 2022)

 

If you'd like to calculate the due date for your request, you can use the
Ombudsman's online calculator here: [2]http://www.ombudsman.parliament.nz/

If you have any questions while we're processing your request, please let
us know via [3][email address]

 

Ngā mihi  

OIA Services Team  

   

[4]Ministry of Health information releases  

[5]Unite against COVID-19 

 

 

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References

Visible links
1. https://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/dise...
2. http://scanmail.trustwave.com/?c=15517&a...
3. mailto:[email address]
4. https://www.health.govt.nz/about-ministr...
5. https://covid19.govt.nz/

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