OLTCA Applauds Government's New Seniors Strategy and Its Commitment to Enhance Long-Term Care

Toronto - November 7, 2017 - The Ontario Long Term Care Association (OLTCA) is lauding Ontario's updated Action Plan for Seniors, "Aging with Confidence," but more specifically its commitment within the plan to enhance long-term care through investments geared at improving system capacity and bedside care.

"This is the most significant commitment that the province has made in support of long-term care in over a generation and we couldn't be more excited," said Candace Chartier, CEO of the Ontario Long Term Care Association. "It's very clear to me that the government has listened closely to our concerns and has responded in a way that will help effectively move our system forward."

The commitments made by the government through its new plan touched on areas of system need that were recently promoted by the Association through its More Care. Better Care. pre-budget submission, which was released in October. The commitment includes a plan to provide an immediate enhancement to system capacity through the addition of 5,000 new long-term care beds by 2022, with a total of over 30,000 beds to be created over the next decade.

"With over 32,000 seniors on a waiting list for long-term care services today and the number set to rise, this announcement couldn't come at a better time," added Chartier. "We need more system capacity to support the growing number of seniors who need long-term care in our province, and this announcement does just that."

In addition to adding more long-term care beds, the province also touched on their intention to enhance care supports for Ontario's most vulnerable seniors by funding more care hours in long-term care, so as to bring the sector up to a funded average standard of care.

"What the province is doing to increase access to care for Ontario's long-term care residents is more than significant," continued Chartier. ""Ensuring that we are striving towards a publicly funded average across our homes will go a long way to enhancing the way we care for the most medically complex seniors in our system."

Through today's announcement the province also signaled its intention to come up with unique solutions to many other challenges promoted by the Association, including challenges borne by operators who must redevelop their homes in the Greater Toronto Area.

"Although there is always more work to be done, we are very encouraged by the province's commitment to long-term care, as evidenced today. We look forward to participating in discussions with the government on how we can effectively and efficiently enhance access to care and related services for seniors across our great province," concluded Chartier.

About the Ontario Long Term Care Association 
The Ontario Long Term Care Association is the largest association of long-term care providers in Canada and the only association that represents the full mix of long-term care operators — private, not-for-profit, charitable, and municipal. The Association represents nearly 70% of Ontario’s 630 long-term care homes, located in communities across the province. Our members provide care and accommodation services to more than 70,000 residents annually. 

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For more information, please contact: 
Adrian Kupesic
Director, Public Affairs & Governance
Ontario Long Term Care Association