Ontario Creating More Long-Term Care Beds for Families in the Niagara Region
Province Opening 81 New Beds in Virgil
Ontario is opening 81 new long-term care beds in the Niagara region -- part of a major new investment in the 2018 Budget to support care, create opportunity and make life more affordable for seniors and their families.
Dr. Helena Jaczek, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, was joined by Jim Bradley, MPP for St. Catharines, at Pleasant Manor today to announce the opening of 81 new long-term care beds in Virgil to help seniors access the care they need, closer to home. This is part of Ontario's commitment to create 5,000 long-term care beds over the next four years and more than 30,000 over the next decade. These new beds will be in addition to 47 existing beds at Pleasant Manor that will be redeveloped, forming a new 128-bed home.
As part of the 2018 Budget, the province also plans to hire 628 more nurses in long-term care homes across the province that will result in 15 million more hours of nursing, personal support and therapeutic care for long-term care home residents.
The Budget is also supporting seniors and their families by:
- Making prescriptions free for people 65 and over through an expansion of OHIP+. Starting August 1, 2019, about 86,785 seniors in Niagara will no longer have to pay a deductible or co-payment for prescription medications.
- Creating a new Seniors' Healthy Home Program, starting in 2019, that will provide up to $750 per year for eligible households led by seniors 75 and over to help them offset the costs of living independently.
- Creating a new Ontario Drug and Dental Program, reimbursing 80 per cent, up to a maximum of $400 per single person or $600 per couple, of seniors' eligible dental expenses each year for those without workplace health benefits.
Ontario's plan to support care, create opportunity and make life more affordable during this period of rapid economic change includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25, and 65 or over, through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.
- The province has doubled its annual funding for long-term care since 2003, from $2.1 billion to $4.28 billion in 2018-19.
- In addition to creating 30,000 new long-term care beds, Ontario is supporting the redevelopment of 30,000 long-term care beds in 300 homes across the province by 2025, including eliminating all four-bed wards, under the Enhanced Long-Term Care Home Renewal Strategy.
- Ontario’s health care budget will total $61.3 billion in 2018-19 — a five per cent increase from the previous year.
- The 2018 Budget includes proposed investments of $575 million per year by 2020-21 to expand OHIP+ to seniors by eliminating the annual deductible and co-payment under the Ontario Drug Benefit program; an additional $2.1 billion for mental health and addictions care over the next four years; an additional $822 million in 2018-19 for hospital operating funding; and an additional $650 million over the next three years to improve home and community care services.
“Our government is committed to supporting Ontario residents who rely on long-term care homes for their ongoing health and personal care needs. By adding 81 new long-term care beds to the redevelopment of Pleasant Manor in Virgil, and providing more resources to support residents, we are helping more seniors access the care they need in their community, close to family and friends.”
Dr. Helena Jaczek
“I want to thank Minister Jaczek and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care for making this major announcement of new long-term care beds for Pleasant Manor. By increasing the capacity of long-term care beds, it will assist seniors and families across the Niagara region.”