Following on Wednesday’s announcement that the government was doubling the number of inspectors for Long Term Care Homes, the government today announced a re-write if the Long Term Care legislation. Under the act, offending operators could face fines of up to one million dollars. The new act would also contain new provincial offences. Anyone found guilty of one of the act’s offences will be banned from being involved with a LTC home as an owner, board member, employee or volunteer. The new act would also mandate the four hours per day of individual care that was announced earlier.
More than half of Ontario’s 626 nursing homes are privately run, while others are not-for-profits, charities, or are run by municipalities.
Long-term care minister Rod Phillips says his department listened to the advice of the Long-Term Care COVID-19 Commission and the Auditor General — as well as residents, their families, the public and those working in the sector, in drafting the legislation. He said, “this legislation, if passed, would protect our progress by supporting our commitments to increase staffing for more hours of direct care, enhance accountability, and build more modern beds.”
Currently, close to 70,000 Ontarians live in 626 long-term care homes and more than 60,000 Ontarians live in over 770 licensed retirement homes across the province.
As of June 2021, more than 38,000 people were on the waitlist to access a long-term care bed in Ontario. The median wait time is 163 days for applicants to be placed in long-term care.