Five Long-term care homes in the riding of Peterborough-Kawartha will share in more than $3.1 million of Ontario funding, the area’s MPP announced Wednesday.
The funding aims to boost staffing levels in order for residents to receive additional care time from personal staff and support workers. The government says Ontario long-term care residents currently receive an average of two hours and 45 minutes of direct care.
Peterborough-Kawartha MPP Dave Smith says the new funding is part of a $270-million commitment in 2021-2022 to increase the daily average to three hours per resident per day by the end of the fiscal year.
Continuing the commitment, Smith says it will translate into $18,043,200 more than what the homes would receive by 2024 with the goal of providing residents with an average of four hours of direct care.
“For too long, governments of all stripes have neglected and underfunded our long-term care system,” Smith said. “We have now seen all too painfully the results of that inaction. Today, that changes. $18,043,200 more in annual funding will hire thousands of new nurses, personal support workers, attendants and physiotherapists for homes across our community. Our seniors will see four hours of direct care every day by our hardworking health care professionals.”
Long-term care homes receiving funding for additional staffing for direct care for residents include:
- Extendicare Inc. in Peterborough: $619,816. By the year 2024-2025, the home will receive $3,796,272 annually more than their current funding.
- Fairhaven in Peterborough: $911,908. By the year 2024-2025, the home will receive $5,585,316 annually more than their current funding.
- St. Joseph’s at Fleming in Peterborough: $712,434. By the year 2024-2025, the home will receive $4,363,536 annually more than their current funding.
- Riverview Manor Nursing Home in Peterborough: $345,530. By the year 2024-2025, the home will receive $2,116,320 annually more than their current funding.
- Extendicare Inc. in Lakefield: $356,212. By the year 2024-2025, the home will receive $2,181,756 annually more than their current funding.
Fairhaven executive director Lionel Towns says the funding will have “transformative effects” on the care provided in long-term care homes and on working conditions of staff.
Carl Rodd, CEO of St. Joseph’s at Fleming, echoed the sentiment.
“Our residents, their families, and our entire care team are pleased with the Ontario government’s commitment to increase funding for long-term care,” he said. “This funding will support a staffing model that will allow an increase in direct care time for each of our residents.”
Dawn Baldwin, administrator at Extendicare in Lakefield says staffing has been a long-standing challenge.
“Residents’ care needs have become increasingly complex, and this path to continued funding increases will make a real difference in delivery of safe, quality care for those we serve,” she said.
MaryAnne Greco, administrator of Riverview Manor Nursing Home, says more qualified staff means more daily care for residents.
“All of the funding is to be spent directly on nursing, personal care and programs, with any surplus returned to government,” she said.