Ontario Commits to Increase Direct Care for Long-Term Care Residents

Tuesday, November 2, Ontario Premier Doug Ford announced a new standard of care that will ensure long-term care residents receive an average of four hours of direct care per day. Today’s announcement was made in advance of Ontario’s 2020 Budget, which is scheduled to be released this Thursday, November 5.

Details around this new commitment were provided by Premier Doug Ford, Minister of Finance Rod Phillips, and Minister of Long-Term Care Merrilee Fullerton at Trillium Health Partners in Mississauga.

Commitments

According to the provincial press release, the new commitment to improve quality of care includes:

  • Average daily direct care of four hours a day per resident. Direct hands-on care is provided by nurses or personal support workers to support individual clinical and personal care needs.
  • Hard targets set over the next four years to achieve this standard by 2024-25. Progress against these targets will be measured and reported regularly.
  • Unprecedented changes to educate and recruit the tens of thousands of new personal support workers, registered practical nurses and registered nurses that will be required. As part of the province’s COVID-19 Fall Preparedness Plan, the province is taking the first step by recruiting an additional 3,700 frontline workers for its health workforce.

Recruitment and Investments 

The government will be tasked with recruiting thousands of new personal support workers, registered practical nurses and registered nurses. The province is taking the first step by recruiting an additional 3,700 frontline workers for its health workforce.

Working in collaboration with adjacent sectors, including labour, education and training providers, as well as sector leaders, the government will need help to deliver the significant changes to the long-term care sector to fulfil its four hour per day commitment.

The increase in average daily hours of care builds on the support recently announced for long-term care, including investing $1.75 billion over five years to increase long-term care capacity and spaces for seniors, as well as the government’s commitment to build 30,000 new long-term care beds over 10 years.

If you’re interested in learning more about Santis’ work in the long-term care sector, please contact your Santis Health lead.