PROVINCE INTRODUCES LONG-AWAITED LEGISLATION TO 'FIX' LONG-TERM CARE
Oct 28, 2021
By Bob Komsic
Saying the aim’s to increase accountability of nursing home operators while at the same time improving residents’ care, the Ford government’s introduced legislation to ”fix” the sector.
If passed, homes breaking the law could be hit by double maximum fines with the worst ones possibly facing temporary takeovers.
Maximum fines for private corporations would be $500,000 for a first offence and $1-million if convicted twice.
Minister Rod Phillips says the proposed changes are meant to send a strong message to for-profit operators.
”We want you to be running the homes, we want you to focus on quality of care, we want you to focus on quality of life, but you must operate within the rules or there’ll be consequences,” Phillips stresses.
If passed, the bill would also double the number of inspectors with new powers to lay charges on the spot, grant the government the authority to appoint supervisors for homes as it currently does with dysfunctional hospitals and school boards.
It would also enshrine the government’s promise to provide 4-hours of daily direct care to residents by the year 2025 and sets interim targets.
The Opposition parties say this does not go far enough to improve the system, and continue to call on the government to move away from for-profit operations which saw worse outcomes during COVID.
More than 3,800 nursing home residents across Ontario have died during the pandemic.