It was a tense showdown in the legislature on Monday over the Alberta health care wait times controversy.

The opposition says Health Minister, Gene Zwozdesky, is in conflict of interest and should abort a planned review into allegations that the government covered-up the deaths of patients who were waiting for treatment.

The Wildrose Alliance and the NDP say Zwozdesky was junior health minister a decade ago when some of the problems allegedly started.

Zwozdesky has asked the Health Quality Council to investigate wait times in emergency and cancer care.

He insists the review will be impartial but the opposition is demanding a broader, public inquiry, run by a judge with powers of subpoena.

They say recent reports of doctors being bullied into silence demands a wider investigation but Zwozdesky isn't budging.

Last week, the Premier said it was preposterous to say there is intimidation on doctors who speak out.

The president of the Calgary Physicians Association says it isn't.

"I'm speaking out on healthcare for health care workers and patients. There is a real clear and present problem in the healthcare system and anyone who suggests that this is preposterous, quite frankly that is insulting to health care workers. This is the kind of culture we have worked in for years and it's refreshing to see that perhaps this is coming to a bit of a head," said Dr. Lloyd Maybalm.

There is now an emergency debate happening in the legislature on the calls for a public inquiry.