Nov 13, 2020
By Christine Ross
Ontario’s Registered Nurses’ Association has issued a strong call for action to protect long term care.
The groups is asking for a 28 day lockdown, except for essential services and schools in red zones, more funding to hire nurses and PSW’s, keep essential care workers in the homes and to limit rooms to no more tan two residents.
Mount Sinai Geriatrician Dr. Nathan Stall says they need to target homes with older design, typically found among for profit residences.
“And so these are the homes that we really need to be focusing on, the ones that have older design standards, chain ownership and to really be specific about the risk factors that identify,” Dr. Stall told reporters during a Zoom news conference.
Dr. Stall also calls it ‘ageist’ to isolate seniors while allowing others to carry on normally.
The Association says essential caregivers must be allowed inside, regardless of whether there’s an outbreak. Their call to action comes the day after new provincial modelling shows deaths in long term care homes are rising substantially. Ontario is reporting 17 more COVID-related deaths, 12 are long-term care residents.
There are just over 700 confirmed cases among residents across the province and close to 500 among staff. Currently, there are outbreaks in 93 long-term care facilities.