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Improving Long-term Care Access for Seniors

Endoresed in:

March, 2017

Paper Type:

Position Paper

Authors:

  • Annie Wang (University of Toronto)
  • Austin Yan (University of Ottawa)

Background:

Long-term care homes provide adults with 24-hour nursing and personal care for those who require constant supervision and frequent assistance with activities of daily living, and are a key component of seniors’ health care. Ontario’s waitlist for long-term care beds in May 2015 had 23,443 individuals, which includes clients in hospitals and at home. The time spent waiting for a long-term care bed results in stress for seniors and their caregivers, and may lead to the development of health complications. Bill 41, which was passed December 8, 2016, serves to update a number of laws including the Local Health System Integration Act, 2006 and the Community Care Access Corporations Act, 2001. It is not clear what changes this new healthcare legislation will bring, particularly pertaining to the role of case managers. Case managers currently help to provide home care and manage long-term care home placement.

Recommendations:

  • The MOHLTC should develop a comprehensive wait times strategy to address system challenges for long-term care placement.
  • The MOHLTC should improve the ELTCHRS to provide timely, regular and predictable funding for the renovation of long-term care homes that do not meet current regulatory standards, and set a timeline of five (5) years for completing these renovations.
  • The MOHLTC should maintain the role of case managers to coordinate services in both home care and long-term care settings, especially through the transition period of implementing Bill 41.
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