Ontario Long Term Care Association

Ontario Long Term Care Association

February 04, 2011 17:33 ET

Ontario Long Term Care Association takes its budget request to MPPs

Funding and resource pressures threaten sustainability of Ontario's long term care sector

Attention: Assignment Editor, Business/Financial Editor, Health/Medical Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor TORONTO/ON/MEDIA ADVISORY--(Marketwire - Feb. 4, 2011) - Residents, family members, and staff of Ontario's long term care homes are going viral to send a message to their Members of Provincial Parliament (MPPs) that "untenable financial pressure" is building in the sector and threatening care and service levels to some of Ontario's frailest elderly who live in these homes.

The Ontario Long Term Care Association (OLTCA) today launched an advocacy campaign using local visits with MPPs along with electronic postcards to both highlight the hard work and dedication of its staff teams, and to underscore that it is the members of the teams that provide care and service to residents, who will shoulder the effects of government underfunding.

The "It Takes a Team to Care" campaign features staff who "make our facilities caring and safe homes for Ontario's seniors," said Christina Bisanz, CEO of the organization. In addition to nurses and personal support workers, housekeeping staff, laundry workers, maintenance staff, and food service workers may face cutbacks because of government funding shortfalls, she said.

The 428 OLTCA member homes will participate in the campaign by encouraging residents, family members, staff, volunteers and the public to send their MPP an email post card voicing their concerns about the effect of unfunded cost pressures on staff, and the quality of care residents receive, by visiting http://www.oltca.com/we-care.

The sector employs 77,000 workers and cares for 100,000 residents annually in Ontario. It faces "extreme financial pressure" because of new, unfunded regulations, arbitrated wage settlements, and a 17 per cent WSIB increase, "all of which are outside our control," said Bisanz. Private sector homes in the province face an additional burden with the HST, which has increased their cost of utilities and service contracts.

"The long-term care sector is committed to continuous quality improvement and innovation to better serve residents with increasingly complex care needs" she said. "But without adequate funding and resources, the sector's ability to deliver on these priorities is compromised." Bisanz said the Association is using the campaign to gain support from all elected officials, to ensure sustainable funding for long-term care in Ontario, and prevent significant job loss.

"Long term care homes provide great value for money," said Bisanz. "Our sector is eager to play a larger role as a partner in an integrated health system - one that delivers both quality of care and quality of life that Ontario's seniors living in long term care so rightly deserve," Bisanz said.
/For further information: The OLTCA represents 428 long-term care homes in Ontario. Its members include not-for-profit, charitable, hospital, municipal and private sector homes. Homes provide 24-hour nursing and personal care to some of Ontario's frailest elderly. / IN: HEALTH, POLITICS, SOCIAL

Contact Information

  • Christina Bisanz, CEO, Ontario Long Term Care Association
    Primary Phone: 905-470-8995 ext. 24
    Secondary Phone: 905-717-9059
    E-mail: cbisanz@oltca.com