Ontario Announces Independent Commission into Long-Term Care

Opposition New Democrats have demanded a public inquiry into long-term care

With residents of long-term care homes making up the vast majority of deaths from COVID-19 in the province, the Ford government is going to launch an independent commission into Ontario’s long-term care system beginning in September.

“Our government has been clear that we will review the long-term care system to get a better understanding of the impacts and responses to the COVID-19 outbreak.” said Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Long-Term Care.

Fullerton said details of the commission still need to be worked out such as terms of reference, membership, leadership of the commission and reporting timelines.

“We have been clear the long-term care system in Ontario is broken. We must act quickly and decisively, and that is why an independent non-partisan commission is the best way to conduct a thorough and expedited review. As we all take steps to contain this pandemic, the Commission will get down to work and provide us with guidance on how to improve the long-term care system and better protect residents and staff from any future outbreaks.”

Last week, NDP leader Andrea Horwath called for a public inquiry into long-term care, and at the time, Premier Ford promised a review but did not agree to a sweeping probe of the system.

“Ontarians need and deserve answers, and let me assure you, they will get them.” said Fullerton.