A new transaction between private long-term care providers Revera and Extendicare merely shuffles the board rather than solving the crisis in private long-term care homes that has led to thousands of deaths throughout the pandemic.
As part of the deal announced March 1, Extendicare is acquiring a 15 per cent interest in Revera’s long-term care homes in Ontario and Manitoba and taking over operations in all 32 remaining Revera long-term care homes in those provinces.
The Revera-Extendicare agreement will not improve the situation of residents and employees in these facilities. The same problems resulting from private, for-profit ownership and operation will continue under Extendicare. Staffing shortages, unsanitary conditions, and poor quality of care leads to higher rates of acute illness and death.
“There is nothing innovative about the long-term care agreement between Revera and Extendicare,” said PSAC National President Chris Aylward. “Once again, residents of long-term care facilities are being treated as pawns in a financial chess game, when the focus should be on providing seniors with safe, quality places to live and be cared for.”
During the pandemic, PSAC launched the Make Revera Public campaign, pressuring the federal government and the Public Service Pension Investment Board (PSPIB), which manages the pension plans of federal public service workers, to put an end to private long-term care and bring them under public ownership and control to protect our most vulnerable citizens.
Extendicare’s track record in long-term care is hardly an improvement from Revera’s. The Government of Saskatchewan was forced to assume responsibility of five Extendicare LTCs after 42 people died in a COVID-19 outbreak at Parkside Extendicare in Regina.
PSAC is calling for public hearings to review this agreement. The government should convert these for-profit long-term care facilities to public ownership and operation to protect the well-being of our seniors and improve the working conditions for workers in these facilities.