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Northern wait times for long-term care unacceptable: NDP

Thursday, December 13, 2012   by: Staff



Northern wait times for long-term care unacceptable: NDP

QUEEN’S PARK – NDP Health and Long-Term Care Critic France Gélinas says yesterday’s release of the Auditor General’s report raises concerns about access to long-term care in Ontario’s North, and the use of health care dollars around the province.

“Any time residents of one area of the province are waiting up to three times longer for appropriate care than other areas, we as Ontarians should be worried,” said Gélinas. “Inequitable access to care means many Northerners are falling through the cracks. Their needs are only being addressed when their condition worsens to a crisis.”

According to the report, wait times across the province have tripled since 2005.

Non-crisis applicants in the North West often wait three years or more for placement, and the Auditor General is concerned that wait times could double that moving forwards.

Applicants with specific language, ethnic, or religious requirements could face wait times of over 10 years.

Auditor General Jim McCarter points out a number of issues and possible remedies for the current problems with the long-term care system in Ontario.

Amongst his recommendations is the suggestion that long-term care homes and CCACs publicly disclose more information about wait times and accommodations.

“Ontarians need better access to information about long-term care facilities in their communities, so that they can make more informed decisions about their care and future,” said Gélinas. “Being able to easily identify where you are most likely to find appropriate care will allow Ontarians to better plan for the future.”

Another issue McCarter highlights is the fact that many Ontarians waiting for placement in a long-term care home are still being forced to wait in hospital.

This is more costly, and ties up valuable hospital space.

“When people are forced to wait in hospital beds for months, or even years, because of a lack of appropriate care, we know that more work needs to be done,” said Gélinas. “Dalton McGuinty needs to recall the legislature so MPPs can get to work at finding real solutions to these problems.”


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3rd times a charm 12/13/2012 11:05:32 AM Report

that's what happens when you tear down old age homes and build new ones with fewer beds...

and that's what happens when you turn a senior's residence into a university residence...

I'm so proud of our government...NOT!
friendly 12/13/2012 11:31:19 AM Report

The wait times are not acceptable. People in the Sault are told to put there loved ones in Thessalon and different areas. This makes it hard on the family to visit with them and hard on the home when they have to deal with an upset, loney resident.

What wasn't mentioned is the poor people waiting in the hospital. If they can afford it, they can have a TV. The hospital does not have the social programs that the homes have. The hospital doesn't feel like home at least at the homes they try and make it as comfortable and homey as possible for their residents. These are our elders, they deserve better.
KDP 12/13/2012 11:40:17 AM Report

Definitely unacceptable. A 10year wait, half those people will be dead without ever making it to a long term care facility!
deputy dan 12/13/2012 7:59:16 PM Report

and no where in the article does it say that the seniors using the hospital facilities must pay. Here in the Soo if your loved one is place in the hospital to wait for a bed you will pay for that stay. A friend paid over a thousand dollars a month for her husband, and when asked if he goes into a home in the beginning of the month how does she get some of these funds back. Answer, they expect the funds to be a donation to the hospital.
mema 12/14/2012 5:49:04 PM Report

I am experiencing the most disgusting treatment of an elderly person left to languiish in a Long Term Care facility in Northern Ontario. This establishment is outdated, the building itself about 80 years old and housing about 120 residents. Part of the problem is financial.....we have been duped into believing that if one has a Power of Attorney your rights are protected....not so there are about 150,000 seniors in Ontario alone being abused by this very powerful document and the money they have saved for their care in old age is being frittered away by these P.O.A. rats while their grantors are languishing without the care and necessities they earned and should be entitled to. Children in the care of the C.A.S. and mental health patients have more rights then the elderly. I have seen this with my own eyes and it is sickening. Wake up and start screaming people....if you have a Powers of Attorney in place make certain (I don't really know how one can do this) that your assets are to be used on you not for the personal use of the P.O.A. Or you too could be doomed to live in one of these deplorable establishments. Believe me our Sault Ste. Marie Nursing homes may have some issues but there are some privatley run homes out there ripping off our seniors with the help of their P.O.A. These people are absconding with your hard earned savings so our government is losing this tax revenue at a cost to our Health Care system. It is no wonder our Health Care System is in such desprate measure. Our hospitals and longterm care facilities need this money to maintain a level of care that seniors are entitled to When our assets are hidden from the government to avoid paying taxes in this manner it is criminal activity and the worst form of abuse. Our long term care facilities here in the Sault are mansions compared to the miserable facility my mother has been doomed to. Not only has she been stripped of all her own decision making she is being denied access to her children and surviving sibling. She has totally been denied her civil rights. And make no mistake these Elder Abuse Hotlines take you full circle to nowhere and tell you they can't do a damn thing unless you use up your own savings by hiring a high priced lawyer while the P.O.A. hires himself a lawyer with his grantor's money. We are an againg society....almost everybody gets old someday....we have to get after our governments, municipal, provincial and federal to cough up the resources to put a stop to this criminal activity and protect the most vunerable of our citizens. I am ashamed today to call my self a Canadian. My father wore the uniform of this country during the 2nd world war and our sons and daughters are dying in foreign lands protecting the civil liberties of others while at home this is happening to their parents and grand parents. The pen can be mightier than the sword. Start pounding your keyboards and getting after your representatives on all levels to correct this. Thanks folks for letting me vent. Should you have any ideas at all on how to get some action going with this very serious problem please let me know. Maybe its too late for my mother but not for yours.
Thanks folks...Have a very Merry Christmas
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