SLMHC to receive 76 new long-term care beds

Theresa Fiddler, Traditional Healing Advisor at SLMHC with Priscilla Kakekaspan, Elder.

SIOUX LOOKOUT, ON—May 4, 2018— Sioux Lookout Meno Ya Win Health Centre (SLMHC) is applauding the province of Ontario’s decision to increase support to the people of the North.  In March 2018, SLMHC applied to, Aging with Confidence: Ontario’s Action Plan for Seniors, to increase much needed long-term care capacity in the area.

Meaghan Coker, Senior Policy Advisor for Ontario Ministry of Energy spoke on behalf of Ontario to announce the addition of 76 new long-term care beds to Sioux Lookout.

Today, the Province of Ontario announced the creation of 76 new long-term care beds in Sioux Lookout to help seniors better access high quality, culturally appropriate care and continue to live happy and healthy lives. These new beds are part of the province’s commitment to build 5,000 new beds by 2022 and more than 30,000 new beds over the next decade.

“Our government is committed to supporting Ontario residents who rely on long-term care homes for their ongoing health and personal care needs.  We have allocated 5,000 new long-term care beds, and are delivering on our commitment to increase long-term care capacity by 2022 as part of Aging with Confidence: Ontario’s Action Plan for Seniors.  This is the first step to create more than 30,000 new long-term care beds over the next decade, helping more seniors access the care they need in their community, close to family and friends.”

—Dr. Helena Jaczek, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care

Merv Ningewance spoke on Behalf of Lac Seul First Nation.

There are approximately 30,000 people residing in the Northern Sub-Region including the Nishnawbe Aski Nation northern communities, the Grand Council Treaty #3 community of Lac Seul First Nation, as well as Hudson, Pickle Lake, Savant Lake, and Sioux Lookout.

Presently, SLMHC operates the William “Bill” George Extended Care—a 20-bed, ELDCAP facility providing high-quality, culturally appropriate care to residents.  This allows for one bed to every 1500 people—well below the provincial average. With the addition of the newly announced beds, the ratio will be much better with one bed to every 312 people.  The long-term care bed shortage in the Northern Sub-Region currently forces people requiring this type of care to go elsewhere such as Thunder Bay or Fort Frances.  This is a significant distance away from the resident’s home community and oftentimes isolate them from their family, language and culture.  With fewer residents being sent out of the Northern Sub-Region, bed capacity pressures experienced elsewhere in the system will begin to be alleviated.

Barbara Hancock speaking at the announcement.

“SLMHC would like to acknowledge the tremendous efforts wielded by those individuals and groups who have been advocating along with the hospital for additional long-term care beds in Sioux Lookout over the past decades. Their voices have been heard and without their unwavering dedication to advocating for long-term care, the issue we have been facing would continue”

—Barbara Hancock, SLMHC Board of Directors Co-Chair

Brian Ktytor, Vice President of Corporate Services for the North West LHIN speaking at the announcement engagement.

“The North West LHIN is very pleased with the announcement of 76 new long-term care beds being allocated to the ELDCAP facility project submitted by Sioux Lookout Meno Ya Win Health Centre under the Aging with Confidence Strategy. The project is a great example of collaboration and partnership among organizations and individuals to address the needs of seniors living in this part of Northwestern Ontario while also ensuring residents have access to high quality, culturally appropriate care that is closer to home.”

—Susan Pilatzke, Acting CEO, North West LHIN

Heather Lee, President and CEO of SLMHC referring to the organizations vision while speaking at the announcement.

“On behalf of our organization and the people we serve, I am extremely grateful to the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care for the allocation of 76 new LTC beds within our ELDCAP project submission. In addition to our current 20 beds at the William “Bill” George Extended Care facility, this allocation will provide 96 LTC beds for our region. SLMHC was created and will continue to evolve through the tireless efforts of so many individuals.   Advocating and partnering for improved health outcomes for all of the people we serve; each volunteer, employee, partner organization and community member should be applauded for the relentless pursuit of improved access to care for our seniors and Elders.”

—Heather Lee, President & CEO, SLMHC

Quick Facts:

  • SLMHC will receive 76 new long-term care beds in addition to 20 existing beds.
  • SLMHC has always strived to improve the quality of life, and provide the best possible health outcomes for people of all protected classes.
  • Before SLMHC opened its doors in 2010, there was already a plan in place to build long-term care facilities physically connected to the hospital.
  • In 2014, SLMHC submitted a proposal to build a 96-bed long-term care facility.
  • In March of 2018, SLMHC submitted another application under the Aging with Confidence: Ontario’s Action Plan for Seniors to increase the number of long-term care ELDCAP beds in Sioux Lookout.