Statement from City of Ottawa on Behalf of the Garry J. Armstrong Long-Term Care Home

The safety and well-being of all of our residents is our number one priority. Any incident of abuse is completely unacceptable and at odds with our stated mission, our zero tolerance of abuse policy, and our commitment to the health, well-being, and safety of our residents.

The Personal Support Worker was charged with assault and convicted of a criminal offense in relation to this incident and is no longer working with the City of Ottawa.

Any form of physical, emotional, sexual, verbal or financial abuse or neglect towards a resident from other residents, families, volunteers or employees is not tolerated in City of Ottawa Long-Term Care Homes and all forms of abuse and neglect will be reported and acted upon immediately. The following measures have been implemented in the last few months:

  • Enhanced abuse-prevention training was provided to 100% of our over 1000 person-staff to ensure employees understand how to recognize abuse, how it can be prevented, and what to do if abuse is witnessed.
  • The City has recently completed 13 stakeholder engagement sessions with families and volunteers, 4 sessions with residents of our long-term care homes, and 16 sessions with long-term care homes staff. In addition, all residents, families, volunteers, and staff were given the opportunity to complete a survey. The goal was to receive feedback on how the city may improve safety, care and services.
  • In addition, an independent third party was hired to complete a review of the City’s long-term care services to provide actionable recommendations aimed at preventing and mitigating future incidents of abuse.

All staff needs to provide proof that they meet the Provincial legislated educational requirements, present a valid criminal record check to work with the vulnerable sector and provide professional references. Upon hire, all staff members receive orientation and annual mandatory training, including training on prevention of abuse and neglect, and duty to report abuse and neglect.

In order to ensure that the staff is providing quality care, we have reviewed and updated all 717 care plans to ensure 100% accuracy of the personalized care that every resident is to receive. Quick reference documents are created from the plans to ensure that staff providing care can easily support the delivery of safe resident care.

4 Steps to Shedding Your Pandemic Pounds

Forgive yourself, and start walking toward a healthier you.

For those of you who have put on the Pandemic Pounds or added several new COVID Curves, you are not alone. Alarmingly, the American Psychological Association has recently published that almost half of all adults in their survey now have a larger physique. In fact, 42% of people reported gaining roughly 15 pounds (the average published was surprisingly 29 pounds but that included outliers) over the past year. Interestingly, 20% of adults in this survey lost about 12 pounds (I am surely not in this group). Clearly, there is a relationship between stress and weight change. In addition, one in four adults disclosed an increase in alcohol consumption, and 67% of participants distressingly revealed that they have new sleeping patterns.

This past year has brought about what has been called the 'new normal.' Social isolation and inactivity due to quarantining and remote working have sadly contributed to the decline in many people's mental and physical health, as demonstrated by the widespread changes in people's weight, alcohol consumption, and sleeping patterns. Gym closures, frequent ordering of unhealthy takeout, and increased time at home cooking and devouring comfort foods have had a perceptible impact. In addition, many people have delayed routine medical care and screening tests over fear of contracting Covid-19 during these visits. Unfortunately, the 'new normal' has now placed too many people at risk for serious health consequences, including heart attacks and strokes.

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