Skip to main content

Ontario homes:1 hour less care per elder per day



The death of a resident at a Toronto long-term care facility, allegedly at the hands of another resident, has raised concerns about inadequate staffing levels in Ontario.

Recent Statistics Canada data indicates that Ontario "homes for the aged" fall well short of staffing for homes for the aged in other provinces.  The total hours of staffing per resident  in Ontario homes for the aged are significantly less than the Canada-wide average.  

For Ontario the average is at 4.0 paid hours per resident per day while the Canada-wide average (including Ontario) is 4.9 hours.   That is almost one hour more paid staffing time per resident per day -- or 22.5 % more.  If Ontario were excluded from the Canada-wide data, the gap would be even larger.  

Three caveats.   The data refers to paid hours, not worked hours.  This overestimates the actual amount of care as paid hours includes vacations, holidays, sick leave, etc.   Second, the Stats Canada data reports all staffing hours, including management, administration, housekeeping, dietary and maintenance -- not just nursing and personal care. In Ontario, the debate over staffing has focused on the demand for 3.5 hours of nursing and personal care per resident per day.  

Finally, the category “home for the aged” is as defined by Stats Canada to allow cross-Canada comparisons; it is not as the term is defined by Ontario.   Stats Can says “Homes for the aged includes Nursing homes, homes for the aged and other facilities providing services and care for the aged. Not included are homes for senior citizens or lodges where no care is provided.” 

While this category appears to include somewhat more beds (about 14% more) than normally included in Ontario long-term care, it is probably still somewhat useful as it allows comparisons of care levels for facilities providing similar functions in different provinces.

Expenditure per resident per day for these "homes for the aged" was $155.30 in Ontario.  This is slightly higher than the Ontario long-term care funding level in 2012 of $152.94 per resident per day.


Canada-wide, Stats Can indicates that homes for the aged funding is $183.60, or $28.30 more than Ontario.  That would be enough to pay for another 0.9 hours of care.  Notably, in Ontario, the province also provides a slightly smaller percentage of the total funding compared to the Canada-wide average: 85% versus 88% Canada-wide.

Photo: Ulrichkarljoho

Popular posts from this blog

Deficit? Public spending ain't the cause. Revenue, however...

With the election over, pressure to cut public programs has become quite intense. In almost all of the corporate owned media someone is barking on about it.

Another option -- increasing revenue from corporations and the wealthy is not mentioned.  However, data clearly indicates that Ontario does not have an overspending problem compared to the other provinces.

Instead, it indicates Ontario has very low revenue. 
Ontario has the lowest public spending of all the provinces on a per capita basis (see the chart from the 2014 Ontario Budget below).  So there is little reason to suspect that we have an over-spending problem.  If anything, this suggests we have an under-spending problem.







The Ontario government has also now reported in the 2014 Budget that Ontario has the lowest revenue per capita of any province.  This is particularly notable as other provinces are quite a bit poorer than Ontario and therefore have a much more limited ability to pay for public spending.  (Also notable in this…

Six more problems with Public Private Partnerships (P3s)

The Auditor General (AG) has again identified issues in her annual reportwhich reflect problems with Ontario health care capacity and privatization.   First, here are six key problems with the maintenance of the 16 privatized P3 ("public private partnership") hospitals in Ontario:
There are long-term ongoing disputes with privatized P3 contractors over the P3 agreements, including about what is covered by the P3  (or “AFP” as the government likes to call them) contract.The hospitals are required to pay higher than reasonable rates tothe P3 contractor for  maintenance work the contractor has deemed to be outside of the P3 contract. Hospitals are almost forced to use P3 contractors to do maintenance work the contractors deem outside of the P3 contract or face the prospect of transferring the risk associated with maintaining the related hospital assets from the private-sector company back to the hospitalP3 companies with poor perf…

Health care funding falls, again

Real provincial government health care funding per-person has fallen again this year in Ontario, the third year in a row.  Since 2009 real funding per-person has fallen 2.6% -- $63 per person. 

Across Canada real per person funding is in its fourth consecutive year of increase. Since 2009, real provincial funding across Canada is up $89 -- 3.6%.
In fact the funding gap between Ontario and Canada as a whole has gown consistently for years (as set out below in current dollars).

Ontario funds health care less than any other province -- indeed, the province that funds health care the second least (B.C.) provides $185 more per person per year, 4.7% more.  
Provincial health care spending in the rest of Canada (excluding Ontario) is now  $574 higher per person annually than in Ontario. 

 Ontario has not always provided lower than average health care funding increases-- but that has been the general pattern since 2005.
Private expenditures on health care have exceeded Ontario government increases …