Long-Term Care COVID-19 Commission Releases Interim Report

In July 2020, the Ontario government established an independent Long-Term Care COVID-19 Commission to investigate how and why COVID-19 spread in long-term care homes, how residents, staff and families were impacted, and the adequacy of measures taken by the province and other parties to prevent, isolate and contain the spread. The commission is expected to provide the government with guidance on how to better protect long-term care home residents and staff from any outbreaks in the future. The commissioners are expected to deliver their final report by April 30, 2021.

Commissioner's have been briefed by staff. Monitor presentations and updates. OSOT was interviewed to provide an occupational therapy perspective on the impacts of COVID-19 on residents and access to necessary therapy services.

An interim Report was released on October 23, 2020. View LTC COVID-19 Commission Interim Report.

Implications for Occupational Therapists

Amongst the Commissioners' 11 interim recommendations, two resonate with messaging that OSOT has advocated for many years and were shared with the Commission;

  • In addition to increasing the supply of PSWs, ensure that LTC staff recruitment efforts address the requirement for an appropriate staff mix to meet the increasing acuity and complex care needs of residents

  • ...develop and implement a comprehensive human resources strategy that addresses the full range of staffing issues in the sector. The Ministry’s Long-Term Care Home Staffing Study Report released in July 2020, identifies the best path forward. Further “study” of the Study is not necessary. What is required is the Study’s timely implementation.

OSOT will continue to advocate for increased access to necessary occupational therapy services that support resident needs and contribute effectively to staffing capacity within homes. View OSOT's submission to the LTC Homes Staffing Review.