Ontario government to commit to average four-hour care standard in long-term care

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The Ontario government is promising to establish a new standard that would see long-term care residents receive an average of four hours of direct care every day.

A senior government source not authorized to speak publicly says the province will announce its commitment to the standard today, with a pledge to have it achieved by 2024-2025.

The source says additional details will be laid out in the provincial budget later this week, and a long-term care staffing plan will be released next month.

The source says the province will need to hire ``tens of thousands'' more personal support workers, registered practical nurses and registered nurses in the coming years to provide the care.

The government says long-term care residents currently receive an average of 2.75 hours of direct care per day.

Health-care advocates and unions have long-pressed for a minimum four-hour standard of care to improve conditions in Ontario's long-term care homes.