Posted On: October 6, 2021
TORONTO — The Ontario government will provide up to $270 million this year to long-term care homes to increase staffing levels by 4,050 new long-term care staff across the province, leading to more direct care for residents. This is part of the province’s $4.9 billion commitment to hire more than 27,000 long-term care staff over four years and ensure that residents receive on average four hours of direct care per day by 2024-25.
“We know that more qualified staff means more daily care for residents,” said Rod Phillips, Minister of Long-Term Care. “Hiring more staff is part of our government’s plan to fix long-term care and to improve the quality of care residents receive and the quality of life they experience.”
The Minister also announced that as part of the government’s plan to fix long-term care, it intends to bring forward legislation that will enshrine its commitment to four hours of care into law.
Currently, residents receive an average of two hours and 45 minutes of direct care from nurses and personal support workers. Direct care is hands-on care that includes personal care, such as feeding, bathing and dressing, as well as other important tasks such as helping residents move, medical/therapeutic treatments, and providing medication. This funding will increase the daily average to 3 hours per resident per day, by the end of this fiscal year. This funding also includes $42.8 million to homes to increase care by allied health care professionals that are key to ensuring quality care for residents (such as physiotherapists and social workers), by 10 per cent this year.
“Ontario’s world-class health care system is built on the exceptional quality of care that our health care professionals provide to our loved ones, which is why our government is supporting increased enrolment in nursing and personal support worker programs,” said Jill Dunlop, Minister of Colleges and Universities. “By working with our postsecondary education partners, we are training and educating more talent to support the long-term care sector in communities across the province.”
The government is investing $4.9 billion over four years to increase direct resident care to an average of four hours daily by hiring more than 27,000 staff. Hiring thousands of new staff at long-term care homes and increasing the amount of care they deliver each year will be made possible by annual funding increases to homes:
- $270 million in 2021-22
- $673 million in 2022-23
- $1.25 billion in 2023-24
- $1.82 billion in 2024-25
In the coming days, homes will also be receiving allocations for the additional funding up to 2024-25 to assist them in planning future staffing needs to meet the new care requirements.
The province also announced the launch of a $10 million annual fund to support ongoing professional development opportunities in long-term care, through the Supporting Professional Growth Fund. The fund will support training opportunities for long-term care staff to help them stay current on best practices in their field.