Increased Staffing Must Remain Long Term Care Priority

    MARKHAM, ON, July 17 /CNW/ - Ontario's long term care priority must be on
continuing to provide more staff to give the care and attention residents
need. The benefits of this care are enhanced by a regulatory framework that is
resident sensitive and outcome focused.
    OLTCA therefore welcomes the Ombudsman helping determine if some of the
over 400 existing standards and criteria imposed by the Ministry are
'unrealistic, trivial or irrelevant.'
    "We keep hearing from homes, residents, families and staff that more
staff is needed to provide hands on care," said OLTCA Executive Director,
Janet Lambert. "Releasing the funding so homes can hire the 2,500 PSWs and
2,000 nurses committed to in the provincial budget will make a difference in
resident's lives. This is just the beginning of the extra staffing required."
    The benefit of additional staffing will be further supported by a
regulatory framework that places more emphasis on measuring resident outcomes
than on unnecessary documentation. The latter takes precious nursing time away
from providing care to residents.
    "A system that fosters performance improvement was a major theme in the
recent 'People Caring for People' report," Ms. Lambert said, "and we are
hopeful that the Ombudsman's efforts will facilitate implementing that
report's recommendations. This would include giving 75,000 residents a
collective voice in the process through satisfaction surveys."
    "More staff working within a regulatory framework that puts resident
needs first is the foundation for the effective accountability, transparency
and oversight that we all support," she said.

    OLTCA represents the private, not-for-profit, charitable and municipal
operators of 430 long term care homes that provide care and services to some
50,000 residents throughout Ontario.

For further information:

For further information: Media Contact: Gilbert Heffern, Director of
Communications and Public Affairs, (905) 470-8995, ext. 25, (647) 999-8341

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