Toronto's long term care homes deserve fair reimbursement by the Province

TORONTO, Sept. 19, 2011 /CNW/ - In its deputation to Toronto City Council's Executive Committee today, the Ontario Association of Non-Profit Homes and Services for Seniors (OANHSS) endorsed the City Manager's recommendation for further study before a decision is made on the future of Toronto's long term care homes.

"This is a very complex issue that requires a thorough and careful review," said Donna Rubin, CEO of OANHSS. "At the heart of it is the well-being of the 2,600 residents in the City's 10 homes and ensuring that they receive the best possible care."

OANHSS acknowledged the City's concerns about the added costs that municipalities face in operating long term care homes and urged Toronto to join OANHSS and other municipalities in pressing the Government of Ontario to reimburse municipalities fairly for the additional costs imposed by provincial legislation and policy.

Municipalities are mandated by provincial legislation to operate at least one long term care home. They also have distinctly different operating circumstances from other types of homes in the long term care sector. Many of these differences exist due to provincially controlled factors such as pay equity legislation and the arbitration process. The higher than average salary and benefit costs that result put municipal homes at a disadvantage when comparing their costs to other sectors.

"We urge the City not to pursue divestment or private management, at least until it has explored a fair reimbursement option. Toronto can and should be proud that it has gone well beyond the minimum and developed a respected and in-demand program that is serving very high needs residents," said Rubin. "Adequate provincial funding will ensure that municipalities can continue to fulfill their mandate."

OANHSS is the provincial association representing not-for-profit providers of long term care, services and housing for seniors. Members include municipal and charitable long term care homes, non-profit nursing homes, seniors' housing projects and community service agencies. Member organizations operate over 27,000 long term care beds and over 5,000 seniors' housing units across the province.

For a copy of OANHSS' remarks, go to www.oanhss.org.

SOURCE Ontario Association of Non-Profit Homes and Services for Seniors (OANHSS)

For further information:

Debbie Humphreys
(C) 416-553-7401
(W) 905-851-8821 ext. 233

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Ontario Association of Non-Profit Homes and Services for Seniors (OANHSS)

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