The Government of Canada has announced that two questions related to language will be added to the mandatory short-form questionnaire for the 2011 Census. This move will enable government to fulfil legal obligations under the Official Languages Act.
Ontario’s Ombudsman has released “The LHIN Spin,” a report on his investigation into the Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant Local Health Integration Network’s use of community engagement in its decision-making process. In the report, Ombudsman André Marin calls on the province to improve the accountability and transparency of Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs) across the province.
The Pay for Results program in Ontario is expanding in order to reduce emergency room wait times. Since 2008, the program has helped hospitals lower overall wait times by 4.7 hours (28 percent) for patients who require complex medical care or admission to the hospital and by 1.4 hours (22 percent) for patients with minor conditions.
The South East Local Health Integration Network (SE LHIN) has announced a new initiative that will improve access to high-quality health care, including mental health services, for residents of southeastern Ontario. The initiative, known as the Regional Clinical Services Roadmap, will examine services that are currently available from the SE LHIN’s seven hospitals and the South East Community Care Access Centre.
Ontario’s new Long-Term Care Homes Act, 2007 (LTCHA) came into effect on July 1, 2010. The act states that “a long-term care home is primarily the home of its residents and is to be operated so that it is a place where they may live with dignity and in security, safety and comfort and have their physical, psychological, social, spiritual and cultural needs adequately met.”
The Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) has developed a new Internet resource on human rights and mental health. The Ontario Human Rights Code provides for equal rights and opportunities, and freedom from discrimination in the areas of employment, housing, goods, facilities and services, contracts, and membership in unions, trade or professional associations. The code protects individuals from discrimination and harassment in these areas due to mental health disabilities and addictions, including past, present and perceived conditions. The new web page outlines individuals’ rights and responsibilities under the code in relation to mental health disabilities.
The Ontario legislature has passed the Excellent Care for All Act, 2010. Upon royal assent, the act will help make health care providers and executives more accountable for improving patient care. The legislation will require all health care organizations, starting with hospitals, to:
The report of the Ontario Social Assistance Review Advisory Council (SARAC), a committee appointed in December 2009 by the Ministry of Community and Social Services, was recently released. SARAC’s task was twofold: to develop a report outlining the scope and nature of a social assistance review and to provide a list of short-term fixes in the interim. The final report, “Recommendations for an Ontario Income Security Review,” applies to more than the Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP). SARAC made recommendations for transformation of numerous Ontario and Canadian income security programs, including employment insurance, Canada Pension Plan and Child Benefits.
The Mental Health Commission of Canada is looking at the housing situation for persons with mental illness who are living in Canada. Your input is important and you are being invited to complete a survey that will take 15-30 minutes of your time.
Health and social service professionals are invited to complete an anonymous, 15-minute electronic survey about the tools they use to plan, deliver and evaluate healthcare for women in Ontario. The survey will also gather information about how professionals in these areas prefer to learn about new tools to support them in their work.