The Impact of COVID-19 on Geriatric Care and Nursing Homes in Ontario


The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the healthcare industry, and the geriatric care sector has been one of the hardest hit. In Ontario, nursing homes have been the focal point of the pandemic’s impact, with the majority of COVID-19-related deaths occurring in these facilities. The outbreak has raised serious concerns about the quality of care provided in nursing homes and the preparedness of the healthcare system to deal with pandemics. In this article, we will discuss the effects of COVID-19 on geriatric care and nursing homes in Ontario and explore the possible solutions to improve the situation.

Impact of COVID-19 on Geriatric Care and Nursing Homes in Ontario:

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the vulnerabilities of the long-term care system in Ontario. The elderly population has been the most affected by the outbreak, with nursing homes accounting for more than 80% of COVID-19 deaths in the province. The situation has been aggravated by the high prevalence of chronic illnesses among the elderly, making them more susceptible to severe COVID-19 infections. According to a report by the Ontario Long-Term Care COVID-19 Commission, the province’s nursing homes were not adequately prepared for the pandemic, with many facilities lacking proper infection prevention and control measures.

The outbreak has also had a psychological impact on the elderly residents of nursing homes. The pandemic has resulted in isolation and social distancing measures, leading to a lack of emotional support from family and friends. Many residents have reported feeling lonely and depressed, with some experiencing a decline in their cognitive and physical abilities. The pandemic has also disrupted the daily routines of nursing homes, resulting in reduced physical activity, which can lead to a decline in physical health.

The outbreak has also affected the staff working in nursing homes. Many healthcare workers have been infected with COVID-19, and some have even lost their lives to the virus. The shortage of staff has made it challenging to provide adequate care to residents, leading to staff burnout and high turnover rates. The pandemic has also exposed the low wages and poor working conditions of nursing home staff, highlighting the need for reforms in the sector.

Possible Solutions to Improve Geriatric Care and Nursing Homes in Ontario:

The COVID-19 outbreak has underscored the need for reforms in the long-term care sector in Ontario. The following are some possible solutions that could improve the quality of care provided to the elderly population:

Increase funding: The long-term care sector requires more funding to ensure adequate staffing levels, infection control measures, and personal protective equipment (PPE). The Ontario government has committed to investing $2.5 billion over four years to improve care in nursing homes. The funding could be used to improve staffing levels and wages, purchase PPE, and improve infection prevention and control measures.

Improve infection control measures: Nursing homes need to implement strict infection prevention and control measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases. The measures should include regular testing of staff and residents, strict visitor restrictions, and proper PPE usage.

Improve working conditions: Nursing home staff should be provided with better working conditions, including higher wages, benefits, and paid sick leave. Improved working conditions could lead to higher job satisfaction and staff retention rates, resulting in better care for residents.

Focus on resident-centered care: Nursing homes should prioritize resident-centered care, which involves providing care that is tailored to the individual needs and preferences of residents. Resident-centered care can improve the quality of life for residents, reduce social isolation, and improve overall health outcomes.


The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the geriatric care sector in Ontario, with nursing homes being the hardest hit. The outbreak has exposed the vulnerabilities of the long.


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