TORONTO - Ontario's new health minister had few answers Thursday on what she planned to do to quell public anger over the hundreds of millions of dollars wasted by the province in a bungled attempt to create electronic health records.

Just 24 hours into her new job, Deb Matthews was in the hot seat to provide specifics on whether more heads would roll in the wake of a stinging auditor's report into the $1-billion eHealth scandal, or if she planned to recoup some of the wasted money.

"I have no patience for expenditures that don't directly contribute to better outcomes for people in this province," she said.

That's the message she gave Rob Devitt, eHealth's interim CEO, when she spoke with him Wednesday, Matthews said. Meetings with eHealth board chairwoman Rita Burak, auditor general Jim McCarter and the CEO of Cancer Care Ontario -- the latest agency to be dragged into the spending scandal that's ingulfed the Liberal government -- are also on her to-do list, she added.

But asked twice if she would go after consultants who were overpaid by eHealth, Matthews dodged the question, saying only that she's looking at the auditor general's report very carefully.

"What I can tell you is that what's driving me in this job is to ensure that every dollar we spend on health care in this province goes to improving health care outcomes for families," she said.

McCarter's report, which prompted David Caplan to quit as health minister, found that the province's mismanaged efforts to create electronic health records allowed consultants to run amok with little oversight while millions of dollars in untendered contracts went out the door.

In one case, a consultant on a $1,300-a-day contract billed a daily rate of $1,500, which went unnoticed until he had been overpaid by $30,050, McCarter noted in his report.

Managers at Smart Systems for Health -- the agency that preceded eHealth Ontario -- decided not to do anything about it and kept paying the higher rate until the deal ended last year with a $45,750 overpayment.

Such "alarming" examples should spur the Liberals to try and claw some of it back, said Opposition Leader Tim Hudak.

Matthews inherited "one heck of a mess" from her predecessors David Caplan and George Smitherman, he added.

"Certainly George Smitherman presided over an exponential increase in the culture of entitlement at eHealth and David Caplan did nothing to fix it," he said.

"She has her work cut out for her."

Wednesday's cabinet shakeup also came at the worst possible time, said NDP Leader Andrea Horwath.

Instead of replacing Caplan this summer, Premier Dalton McGuinty has plunged Matthews into the huge health portfolio just as the province is bracing for a second wave of the swine flu and a massive rollout of the H1N1 vaccine.

"To have the ministry destabilized at this point in time with the shuffle is disconcerting and, I think, poor management and poor planning on the part of the premier," Horwath said.

Dissatisfied with Caplan's resignation, the opposition parties are now turning to Smitherman and demanding that he also pay the price for the billion-dollar boondoggle at eHealth.

But the deputy premier, who was health minister for four years before he moved to energy and infrastructure last year, said he's not going anywhere.

He also rebuffed suggestions that the scandal could provide ammunition to his opponents if he decided to take a widely-expected run at becoming Toronto's next mayor.

"I've been in politics since I was 15 years old -- almost 30 years now -- and over the course of that time, some people like you and some don't and some people admire your work and some don't," Smitherman said.

"And it's all part of a bigger package and you've just got to take it as part of the overall piece."