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I’m in a long-term care home and want to leave because of COVID-19. What can I do?

I’m in a long-term care home and want to leave because of COVID-19. What can I do?
Reviewed: 
May 5, 2020
Answer

The Ontario government made new rules about moving out of a long-term care home for a short time because of COVID-19.

These rules let you move out temporarily to live on your own or with family members or friends. And then you can move back in:

  • once you or your substitute decision-maker thinks it’s safe to do this, and
  • as soon as there’s a spaceavailable.

The long-term care home does not have to keep your room or bed open while you’re away. But you’ll be placed in the top category of the waiting list when you ask to return.

A substitute decision-maker is a person who has the legal right to make decisions for you when you’re not mentally capable of making them yourself.

After 3 months

The rules are different if you move out for more than 3 months. Before you can move back in, the long-term care home will assess you to make sure that they can still give you the care that you need.

If they can still give you the care that you need, you’re placed in the readmission category for that long-term care home.

If they cannot give you the care that you need, they will not take you back. But you’ll be given high priority for a space at another long-term care home that can provide the care you need.

For information and help

If you don’t know what to do if you’re offered a long-term care space, you can contact the Advocacy Centre for the Elderly or your local community legal clinic.

You can also call your Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). To get the contact information for the LHIN in your area:

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