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Saultites far from alone with these health-care concerns

Monday, April 28, 2014   by: Rick McGee

Worries about staffing in long-term care facilities aren’t limited to Sault Ste. Marie’s F.J. Davey Home.

A telephone survey conducted by Nanos Research has revealed that the issue appears to trouble people across the province. 

“More than 90 percent of Ontarians are concerned or somewhat concerned about proper staffing support for seniors in LTC [long-term care] and about ensuring the good physical condition of long-term care homes in Ontario,” Nanos reports. “More than four in five (82 percent) believe the government needs to invest in LTC now to ensure seniors get the quality care they need.”

Survey participants ranked their overall top three health-care priorities as follows:

1) Reducing hospital wait times

2) Improving access to doctors

3) Improving long-term care homes for seniors

The work was commissioned by the Ontario Long Term Care Association (OLTCA).

It is the province's largest long-term care provider association and the only one that represents private, not-for-profit, charitable and municipal operators.

The survey results were released earlier this month in an effort to influence the new provincial budget to be tabled on May 1.

"It's rare to see Ontarians rally so overwhelmingly around one issue,” said Nik Nanos, chairman of the Nanos Research Group, in commenting on the findings through a news release. “The findings are clear - Ontarians have a sense of urgency about investments in LTC, even in the face of provincial budget pressures."

Locally, cuts to residents’ care at the Davey Home have been described as “extremely worrisome” by some resident family members and front line nursing and personal care staff.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees also claims there is widespread agreement among families, nursing home operators and front line workers that care levels for residents must increase.

CUPE has undertaken various actions to increase public attention on the situation.

Huge increase in number of seniors

With Ontario’s seniors population expected to nearly double by 2035, survey respondents also expressed fear that capacity might fall short of growing demand.

According to Nanos, 91 percent of respondents are “concerned” or ”somewhat concerned” about the availability of long-term care beds to meet future needs.

"Despite budgetary pressures, Ontarians believe that the needs and challenges of our seniors in long-term care should be made a priority,” said Candace Chartier, CEO of the OLTCA. “This should be at the front of our leaders' strategies going forward, particularly given that the province plans to release a budget and work to stave off an election.”

Ontario’s daily funding for long-term care is the lowest among Canadian provinces, says the association.

In its 2013 budget submission, the OLTCA identified a “7.1 percent funding gap related to complex-care needs in Ontario long-term care homes.”

The association wants the Wynne government to boost 2014-15 provincial funding by 3 percent across all related envelopes.

Nanos conducted the random telephone survey of 500 Ontarians between February 28 and March 3, 2014. 

The dual frame sample included both land- and cell-lines.

The results were statistically checked and weighted by age and gender using the latest Census information and the sample is geographically stratified to be representative of Ontario.

The margin of error for a random survey of 500 Ontarians is plus or minus 4.4 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

To read the full report, look under "featured research" at this website.

Comments
16
Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of SooToday.com. If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
asp 4/28/2014 10:21:10 PM Report

It's so true we need more funding for Nursing Home but the Wynn government doesn't care. Look at what is going on in Sault Ste. Marie there isn't enough nursing homes to care for those who need it, these patients are taking up space in the Hospital while waiting in line for a nursing home. This whole situation decrease stays for patients, that really need a bed, but are rushed home to get their care for home nurses. The Nursing Care for patient has also decrease Access Center but office workers jobs are not being deceased one bit. COME ON PEOPLE VOICE YOUR CONCERNS CALL YOUR GOVERNEMT REPRESENTATIVE !!!!!! at home is being cut also, now patient have to get themselves to a clinic to get care, not that nursing jobs are being cut because of this whole issue.
rider_ 4/29/2014 12:05:11 AM Report

not really a pressing issue, these people don't understand the budgets they're criticizing, typical wish-washy nonthinking
wandering 4/29/2014 12:26:47 AM Report

we wont have more funding they will start making cut soon just like they do in United State
It is scary to get old
Pakadeva 4/29/2014 12:33:56 AM Report

The LTC right now is a state of emergency! If you don't have family or friends in LTC, take a stroll & visit a facility...sit for awhile & see how long it is taking for staff who are run ragged, to get to all the call bells etc. Know what you're talking about before you criticize. Prisoners get better care than our seniors & WE pay for that! Seniors are paying a good part of their own housing with their pensions...let's pick up the slack & prisoners rot instead of seniors! I have emailed David O 3 times, I got a response only to the first email. This poll is exactly on target folks! Wake up & see that our seniors live a better lifestyle at the end of their life.
fcubed 4/29/2014 8:27:00 AM Report

All we "the-non-productive" drains on the public purse via pensions plus subsidized care have the RIGHT TO hurray up and DIE. End of problem. Me, age 76 await the REAPER.
Gurpy 4/29/2014 8:36:07 AM Report

asp
People would gladly contact their government rep if that particular rep would acknowledge phone calls, emails,hand written letters etc. That is not happening! We need an election! We need a party that listens and acts quickly!
impola 4/29/2014 9:16:43 AM Report

All the cutbacks at the F.J.Davey home where is this money going to I like know, someone's pocket? it's not going to the care of the residents there.
SWEN 4/29/2014 9:31:30 AM Report

would it not be prudent for our Feds to stop sending billions of our dollars to countries that have their elite pocket it and use that money to help our own poorest and most destitute. I am 71 and still working but have a great fear of the day I can no longer help myself.
SAPHIRE 4/29/2014 9:43:54 AM Report

The government responded to this latest claw-back by saying "we have not reduced funds allotted to LTC facilities". What they have failed to do is hold the corporations, who operate these facilities, accountable for maintaining adequate staff:resident ratios. The LTC institutions cannot operate without maintaining a license ergo maintaining their funding and should not be issued any tax dollars until they are in full compliance. The government must INSIST increasing the number of staff in LTC residences.
irishfey 4/29/2014 9:52:42 AM Report

Which Hospital was donated years back that was for the sole purpose of being used as a Health Care faciluty? Was it the Plummer that is now sold and is going to be used as an expensive condo housing? The Plummer would have made a great Nursing Home!!!... Nope.. GREED sets in!!.. Maby it"s time for the Seniors and the Disabled to start a picket line in front of David O"s office... Wheelchairs, walkers, etc., bedpans ( full ) can be set on his doorstep!!!...
ThinkAgain 4/29/2014 10:03:29 AM Report

It was a know fact some 20-30 years ago.

When there aren't enough taxpayers the purse becomes empty.

Too many politicians taking extreme high salaries, pensions & perks - taxes at all time high, just no money for services.

You don't expect our politicians to take cuts. Do you?

Problems is we as tax payers can't change a dam thing. Its been the same way all my life.


Gurpy 4/29/2014 10:51:21 AM Report

irishfey
The picket is a great idea. One little problem though, his way of dealing with issues he does not want to deal with is a) ignore it b) call the police or c) make sure he`s out of the office.
Gurpy 4/29/2014 12:25:52 PM Report

Hey, at least sootoday didn`t close down the comment section for this story like they did the Jacobs one!
Sootoday, why did you close the comments for that particular section?? Honestly!!
mbir01 4/30/2014 10:12:07 AM Report

This is a pressing issue, if you do not work in long term care you wouldn't see how this is directly affecting the residents of the home. Think of all the basic things you can do for yourself, brush your hair, teeth, eat, go to bed, use the washroom- now think of someone who isn't able to complete one of those simple tasks and has to wait however long until 1 staff member can attend that basic need. The waiting time is increasing due to lack of staff to assist these residents. It affects us staff members mentally as well that we can not give our residents the proper care they deserve.
mbir01 4/30/2014 10:12:07 AM Report

This is a pressing issue, if you do not work in long term care you wouldn't see how this is directly affecting the residents of the home. Think of all the basic things you can do for yourself, brush your hair, teeth, eat, go to bed, use the washroom- now think of someone who isn't able to complete one of those simple tasks and has to wait however long until 1 staff member can attend that basic need. The waiting time is increasing due to lack of staff to assist these residents. It affects us staff members mentally as well that we can not give our residents the proper care they deserve.
Gurpy 4/30/2014 2:40:06 PM Report

Yes, it is a pressing issue. The quality of care for our seniors has been in a state of crisis since 1990, that I`m aware of and it continues to worsen! If our current provincial government refuses to act, then we need a new provincial party asap!
Comments
16
Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of SooToday.com. If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
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