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Transforming Long-Term Care

Archived Backgrounder

Transforming Long-Term Care

Ministry of Health

Ontario is transforming the role of long-term care to help older Ontarians get home sooner while providing better care to long-term care residents with complex needs.

These new measures respond to recommendations in Dr. Samir Sinha's report on the changing needs of long-term care in Ontario and the report of the Long-Term Care Task Force on Resident Care and Safety.

Convalescent Care Program

Convalescent care beds are short-stay beds that help deliver care to people who need time to recover strength, endurance and functioning following treatment in a hospital. These beds also provide respite care, helping support informal caregivers while bridging seniors in the transition from hospital to home.

Up to 250 new convalescent care beds will improve access to restorative care for older Ontarians and will help approximately 1,500 seniors annually who are waiting in hospitals or in their community for restorative care. This represents an increase of 50 per cent, bringing the total number of convalescent care beds in Ontario to 750. This increase in short-stay beds will help older Ontarians stay healthy and independent at home and in the community, avoiding or delaying permanent admission to long-term care.

Increasing the number of short stay beds in long-term care is one of the recommendations in Dr. Sinha's report.

Behavioural Supports Ontario

Behavioural Supports Ontario enhances the health care services of seniors across Ontario who live and cope with responsive behaviours associated with dementia, mental illness, addictions and other neurological conditions. Behavioural Supports Ontario is improving service delivery and easing the strain on the health care system by reducing resident transfers between long-term care homes and hospitals.

To improve behavioural supports service delivery in long-term care, the McGuinty government is investing in the training and recruitment of 200 personal support workers who will assist in supporting people with challenging and complex behaviours in long-term care homes and help these residents with the activities of daily living. 

Additional training opportunities through the behavioural supports initiative for long-term care staff is a recommendation in Dr. Sinha's report and the Long-Term Care Task Force report.

Staff Training and Development 

Ontario is supporting training for long-term care staff to improve care provided to residents.  With this investment, long-term care homes will deliver staff training and development opportunities that focus on:

  • Improving resident safety
  • Preventing abuse and neglect
  •  Advancing quality of care for residents with responsive behaviours or other specialized care needs, including residents with palliative or end-of-life care needs

Maximizing the knowledge and skills of long-term care staff with additional training opportunities and quality improvement initiatives is one of the recommendations in Dr. Sinha's report and the Long-Term Care Task Force report. 

Specialized Supplies and Equipment

Ontario is helping long-term care homes purchase specialized equipment to provide safer and higher quality care for residents requiring specialized care and services, including: 

  • Supplies to prevent skin breakdown
  • Wound care supplies
  • IV pumps and supplies
  • Palliative care equipment and supplies
  • Specialized feeding equipment
  • Bariatric beds and lifts
  • Wheelchairs

Helping long-term care homes to provide higher levels of care to individuals with complex care needs is one of the recommendations in Dr. Sinha's report.

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