In this edition of the HR Healthcheck, we discuss the newly revised Directive #5 issued by Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health (CMOH) with respect to personal protective equipment use in public hospitals and long-term care homes. We also discuss a new regulation filed under the Personal Health Information Protection Act which expands administrative responsibilities under that statute. Finally, we mention Ontario’s recent announcement limiting visitors to long-term care homes in Toronto, Ottawa and Peel Region.
On May 13, 2020, the Ontario government issued an order (O. Reg. 210/20, Management of Long-Term Care Homes in Outbreak) (Order) made under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act which is intended to provide long-term care homes with additional assistance in managing COVID-19 outbreaks.
On April 14, 2020, the Ontario government issued an Emergency Order (Order) pursuant to the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA) which relates specifically to staffing issues in Ontario’s long-term care sector. The Order, O. Reg. 146/20, Limiting Work to a Single Long-Term Care Home, creates immediate obligations for both long-term care employers and employees working in long-term care homes. Once the requirements of the Order are met, the Order will effectively impose a “single-employer” rule for employees in this sector, preventing them from working for more than one Health Service Provider or retirement home until the Order is lifted.
On April 2, 2020, the Ontario government issued an order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act authorizing every retirement home and licensee (within the meaning of the Retirements Homes Act, 2010) to take all reasonable steps necessary to respond to, prevent and alleviate the outbreak of COVID-19 in a retirement home.
On Friday, March 27, 2020, the Ontario government issued a second Emergency Order to specifically address the Long-Term Care Homes sector (O. Reg 95/20: Streamlining Requirements for Long-Term Care Homes).
On Monday, March 23, 2020, the Ontario government issued an Emergency Order granting Ontario Health Service Providers broad authority to take all reasonable steps necessary to staff as needed to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. The government has now taken two significant steps to grant similar authority to Long-Term Care home providers and Municipal Homes for the Aged to address the staffing issues which may arise due to the emerging pandemic.
On February 25, 2020, the Ontario government tabled Bill 175, Connecting People to Home and Community Care Act, 2020 (Bill 175). The legislation is intended to improve funding and access to home and community care for patients.