Have your say on the new National Long-Term Care Services Standard

Published on May 14, 2021

At long last, Canadians will have an opportunity to present their views to the Health Services Organization (HSO), who along with the Standards Council of Canada (SCC), Health Standards Organization (HSO) and Canadian Standards Association (CSA Group) are working collaboratively on developing new national standards for Long Term Care (LTC). The survey, we are sharing is an important opportunity for all of us to share our views.

"As the Health Services Organization (HSO) begins developing the new standard, input is needed on what matters most when it comes to long-term care (LTC). Your responses will help shape what optimal LTC ought to look like in Canada.

HSO’s National Long-Term Care Services Standard will focus on:

  • resident- and family-centered care practices that value the importance of respect, dignity, trust, and quality of life.
  • safe and reliable care based on evidence-informed practices.
  • a healthy and competent workforce to ensure sustainable, team-based, compassionate care."

Given the work done by the Montreal Council of Women, the National Council of Women of Canada (NCWC) and our collaborative work with the Quebec Provincial University Women's Clubs related to long-term care, the following general points are shared to help guide you through the questions posed in the survey. They reflect NCWC policy and the advocacy we have done with our Federate members. The General Points below are not an exhaustive list of concerns that the Covid pandemic has exposed but offer salient issues that require immediate attention. The survey also provides for individuals to add in their own suggestions.

Here is the link to the survey:
Provide Your Input — HSO National Long-Term Care Services Standard (

Please both consider filling out this critical survey and feel free to share it widely.


Long Term Care Facilities – Buildings

  • Long-term care facilities should not be ghettoized far from communities and should be integrated with other community opportunities. (to help reduce the isolation seniors experience and increase social interactions).
  • Buildings should be low-rise and be situated near a school, a library, or a community centre.
  • Buildings of long-term care facilities need to be repaired and maintained with proper ventilation systems and air-conditioning throughout.


  • Seniors in long-term care facilities should not be placed in crowded rooms.
  • There should be no more than two seniors per room.
  • Where needed, provide adjustable beds.


  • Better Nurse/client ratios to provide quality and sufficient care.
  • Better Auxiliary staff ratios should be set to augment nursing care and should not be used to replace the care nurses provide.
  • Better training, pay and incentives, and benefits to those whose careers are focused on LTC.
  • Staff should not be contingent or part-time as they move from one facility to another.
  • Staff isolation accommodation and protocols should be in place in the event of a pandemic/ epidemic to prevent the spread of disease back to their families.
  • Adequate PPE (gloves, gowns, masks, etc.) should be provided to staff working at long-term care facilities as well as medical equipment such as oxygen, respirators, syringes, etc.


  • All LTC facilities, public and private should only be accredited if national standards are met.
  • Unannounced government inspections should take place, regardless of complaints, on a regular basis.
  • Following inspections, an annual report of all long-term care facilities should be made public including details regarding the number of inspections, the nature of issues or problems identified, and if any, that were resolved, etc.

Other – Recreation, Family Issues, etc.

  • To reduce isolation, the facilities need to integrate and bring in the resources available in the community for entertainment that include programs that respond to the ethnic, cultural, and racial diversity of the residents. (musical days, arts and crafts, intergenerational programs with young people, technological or other courses of interest).
  • The facilities need to provide a code of ethics to families, as well as establishing clear communications, consultation practices, and protocols in the event of an emergency.

Respectfully submitted,

Maria Peluso, VP Government Affairs

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