Long-Term Care Policy Lab

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the ways people living in long-term care (LTC) are vulnerable, and where care can be improved. As a result, many provinces and territories have been taking action to review their policies, processes and practices.

To support the development and implementation of effective policies in the LTC sector, Healthcare Excellence Canada (HEC) hosted a policy lab series in late 2022 and early 2023. The series brought together 23 stakeholders over two sessions ranging from patients and caregivers to health system leaders, to data specialists, to government policymakers.

Through facilitated discussions, participants explored this question: What principles and/or processes are necessary to support co-design and collaboration among those designing LTC policies and directives (including long-term care acts, legislation and inspection programs), those responsible for translating and implementing LTC policy/directives and legislative requirements, and those providing, participating in, and experiencing care in LTC settings?

The overall objectives for the policy lab series were the following:

  • Understand the experiences of the various user groups in LTC including residents, families and caregivers; care managers; direct care staff; and policy-makers.
  • Explore the needs of these different groups when it comes to the development, implementation and evaluation of policies in LTC settings; and
  • Design policy processes/approaches that enable co-design of policy/standards for LTC, that support resident-centred approaches to care.

Two key knowledge products resulted from the policy lab process and are shared to support improvements to long-term care:

  1. An ‘ideal’ policy making process
  2. A legislative table summarizing and compiling long-term care Acts across provinces and territories

Ideal policy making process

Through the course of their discussions, policy lab participants developed guidelines/recommendations for how to develop LTC policies that reflect the perspectives of those who provide and who experience care. These guidelines can be used to enable co-design of resident-centred policy in various contexts or jurisdictions.

The table below displays the ‘ideal’ policy making process which was articulated by the policy lab participants.

Download the table

Legislative table

As the need for reform in LTC policies and practices becomes increasingly apparent, navigating the complexities of policy development and implementation remains a challenge. Our Legislative Table simplifies this process by enabling you to quickly identify policy authors and their most recent amendments. We recognize the importance of including the perspectives of both care providers and recipients to ensure resident-centered care. With the Legislative Table, you can gain a deeper understanding of LTC policies, fostering informed decision-making and advocacy for positive change.

Download the table