TORONTO — Ontario’s long-term care minister says supply chain issues and COVID-19 outbreaks are hampering efforts to install air conditioning in all resident rooms.
Paul Calandra says the province is following up with long-term care homes that have failed to meet a government deadline – 90 homes have yet to become fully air-conditioned.
Legislation passed last year required that homes install air conditioning in all resident rooms by June 22 of this year.
A spokesperson for the ministry says 537 of the province’s 627 long-term care homes were fully air-conditioned as of Tuesday.
The ministry could not say how many residents are affected.
Temperatures have soared this week across much of the province, prompting Environment Canada to issue heat warnings for several regions on some days.
Calandra says the issue is “top of mind,” particularly in light of the recent weather.
“Are we ensuring that (the remaining homes) are doing everything they possibly can to get air conditioning into the homes? Yes,” he said at the legislature. “But in those instances where supply chain issues are happening or where there is an outbreak, we have to follow the advice of the chief medical officer of health and we have to do our best to overcome the supply-chain issues.”