Province investing more into specialized long-term care beds

The Ontario government is further expanding its support for the most vulnerable long-term care residents.

The province is investing another $9 million for the continued operation of 62 beds in three existing Behavioural Specialized Units and for the addition of up to 82 new specialized spaces in targeted regions across the province.

This investment is an extension of a pilot project started in 2019, when 62 new specialized beds for residents with complex responsive behaviours were established in three homes in Whitby, Mississauga and St. Catharines.

Minister of Long-Term Care, Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, says investing in Behavioural Specialized Units is another example of the government delivering on its promise to provide innovative models of care that focus on the needs of residents.

“This investment is part of our commitment to modernize the long-term care sector and will ensure our most vulnerable residents enjoy the level of care, comfort, and safety they deserve,” she says.

Behavioural Specialized Units (BSUs) provide specialized care to those with responsive behaviours that cannot be effectively supported in their current environment and for whom all other applicable services, such as regular long-term care beds and community supports, have been fully explored.

A BSU offers specialized and increased staffing, a tailored environment, focussed behavioural assessment and enhanced care planning.

In addition to improving quality of life and enhancing safety for residents, the province says the investment will also support the easing of hospital capacity pressures by helping patients with more complex responsive behaviours move from hospitals to long-term care homes faster.

There are currently 12 BSUs at long-term care homes province-wide, including the three homes funded in 2019 as part of the pilot project – Fairview Lodge in Whitby, Cooksville Care Centre in Mississauga, and Linhaven in St. Catharines.

The province is also investing $2.68 billion for the delivery of 30,000 new long-term care spaces over 10 years.

The province now has 20,257 new and 15,918 redevelopment spaces in the development pipeline.