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Ontario Expanding Direct Care Hours for Long-Term Care Residents

Arafat Rahman

In order to keep increasing the amount of direct care time provided to residents, the government of Ontario is providing long-term care facilities across the province with up to $1.25 billion this year to hire and retain thousands more long-term care staff. This is one component of the historic $4.9 billion commitment made by the government over the course of four years to hire and retain more than 27,000 registered nurses, registered practical nurses, and personal support workers and to guarantee that residents will receive an average of four hours of direct care per day by March 31, 2025.

“In 2018, we inherited a broken long-term care system and status quo that was no longer working so we introduced a historic plan to fix long-term care,” said Paul Calandra, Minister of Long-Term Care. “With the largest investment in long-term care in Ontario’s history, we’re hiring more staff to increase daily direct care for residents to ensure they can continue to connect to the care they need in the comfort of their long-term care home.”

To achieve the system-level average direct care targets outlined in the Fixing Long-Term Care Act, 2021, long-term care facilities are receiving the third and largest annual funding increase to date. Personal care, such as assistance with eating, bathing, and dressing, as well as other crucial tasks like assisting residents in moving and providing medication, are all examples of direct care.

More people than ever before are working in long-term care because of the government’s ambitious plan. This year’s funding will help residents receive an average of three hours and 42 minutes of direct care per day, as well as 36 minutes per day from allied health professionals like physiotherapists, social workers, and resident support aides.

To ensure that seniors in Ontario receive the high-quality care and quality of life they need and deserve now and in the future, the government is reforming long-term care. There are four pillars to this work: care and personnel; quality and compliance; building current, protected and agreeable homes; and making it easier and faster for seniors to get the services they need.

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