29 July 2020 – Ontario launches Independent Long-Term Care COVID-19 Commission

Type of Intervention: New Tool / Service / Body
Sectors Involved: Health
Intervention Categories: Legal and policy; Reviews
Level of Jurisdiction: Ontario
Lead People/Agency: Premier Doug Ford and Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Long-Term Care; Commissioners: Associate Chief Justice Frank N. Marrocco (Chair), Angela Coke, and Dr. Jack Kitts

Overview: The Ontario government has launched an independent commission into COVID-19 and long-term care (LTC) in Ontario. Three commissioners will investigate how COVID-19 spread within LTC homes, how staff, residents, and families were affected by LTC home outbreaks, and evaluate the measures taken by the province and other relevant groups to prevent and contain COVID-19. The commission will then provide guidance on how to improve protection of LTC home residents and staff in the instance of future outbreaks. A final report of their findings is expected by April 2021.
Full details here: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/07/ontario-launches-independent-long-term-care-covid-19-commission.html

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Type of Justification: Advice of INTERNAL government advisory committee or group
Source of Evidence or Justification: National – other, Sub-national, provincial government
Evidence/Justification: Ontario’s Minister of Long-Term Care, Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, explained that Ontarians deserved a timely and transparent investigation into the impact of COVID-19 in LTC settings, without influence from political parties. The government explains that the investigation will help identify methods to prevent future spread of COVID-19 and other diseases in LTC settings, protecting staff and residents to a greater degree. This stems from the shocking findings from reports from the Canadian Armed Forces earlier in 2020 after they were called into some LTC homes in Ontario to assist with COVID-19 outbreaks.