MEDIA STATEMENT: ONA Supports the Auditor-General’s Recommendations on the Serious Staffing and Infection Control Issues in Long-Term Care

April 28, 2021

TORONTO, April 28, 2021 – The Ontario Nurses’ Association (ONA) supports recommendations made by the Auditor-General’s Report on the lack of preparedness for preventing COVID-19 in long-term care homes.

“As the union representing front-line registered nurses and health-care professionals working in the province’s long-term care homes, we appreciate the Auditor-General’s recognition of the seriousness of the staffing shortage in these homes,” says ONA President Vicki McKenna, RN. “The report cites ONA’s own concerns about short-staffing in long-term care, which we have raised for decades as a barrier to care for vulnerable residents.”

McKenna notes that ONA’s work regarding concerns about the lack of effective infection prevention and control (IPAC) training, principles and protocols for long-term care has also been cited by the Auditor-General. This was vital during the pandemic and put both residents and staff at risk of infection. ONA notes that staff infections in long-term care homes led to increased shortages of workers.

Many of the Auditor-General’s recommendations echo those previously made by ONA and other organizations in the past and believes the government must take immediate action to ensure enforcement and accountability for staffing levels, quality care and inspections in long-term care.

ONA is the union representing more than 68,000 registered nurses and health-care professionals, as well as 18,000 nursing student affiliates, providing care in hospitals, long-term care, public health, the community, clinics and industry.


For more information: 

Sheree Bond (416) 986-8240 (cell)