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Group calling for human rights inquiry as province’s long-term care waitlist grows

Posted: March 24, 2021

(March 23, 2021)


A group is calling for a formal inquiry into alleged age discrimination in Ontario hospitals and long-term care settings.

The Advocacy Centre for Elderly (ACE), Ontario Health Coalition (OHC) and the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) are jointly asking the Ontario Human Rights Commission to investigate.

The groups accuse the province of “systemic discrimination based on age against the elderly,” when it comes to the provisioning of health and long-term care.

The group says Ontario routinely falls back on discriminatory policies due to a lack of hospital capacity.

During the pandemic, the group says thousands of elderly patients have been transferred out of hospital “often without due regard to their right consent and care needs.”

Long-term care residents have been subject to “horrifically inadequate care,” according to the group. They say many long-term care home residents were not taken to hospital for treatment, even while they were acutely ill.

As of Tuesday, the province says there have been 3,753 long-term care resident deaths due to COVID-19.

The wait list for Ontario long-term care home is 38,000 names long.

As the pandemic continues, the group says urgent action is needed.

In the Central East LHIN, which includes Durham, there are 12,490 people waiting for a long-term care bed. The current wait time is 4,251 days, or 11.5 years.

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