TORONTO – Premier Doug Ford announced on Nov. 2 that long-term care residents will receive an average of four hours a day of care.
But it’s not enough and not fast enough for the Ontario Health Coalition.
Ford said the province will need to hire tens of thousands of personal support workers, registered practical nurses and registered nurses to meet the standard and that it would be achieved by 2024..
“This is a gold standard in the long-term care sector,” Ford said. “And we won’t settle for anything less.”
The Ontario Health Coalition has been seeking this minimum standard of care for about 20 years, but in a press release said the timeline given renders the decision “meaningless.”
“Too much of the government’s response to date has been focused on PR at the expense of concrete measures,” said Natalie Mehra, executive director of the Ontario Health Coalition.
Long-term care homes were hard-hit during the first wave and Mehra said Ontario should have been recruiting and training over the summer to prepare for the second wave
Instead there’s been “no big recruitment drive, no full time work, no improvement in wages and working conditions that would attract people to this work.”
“We desperately need staff in the homes now. It is in this government’s power to do more. Why will they not do it?” she asked.