The District of Muskoka’s two long-term care homes will get a staffing bump.
The Pines in Bracebridge will hire 10 new personal support workers, (PSW) one registered nurse (RN), and a social worker, while Huntsville’s Fairvern Nursing Home is getting two PSWs and an RN. It’s thanks to a $957,290 increase in funding from the district across the two homes.
Jennifer Ridgley, Administrator of The Pines, says the new positions are needed as the province is shifting more hospital patients to the long-term care sector, as well as increasing the amount of direct care per resident to four hours each day.
“We’re getting a lot more residents that are coming from hospital,” says Ridgley. “That became the number one focus because obviously, they need those hospital beds. So if there’s someone who is there who’s able to come to long-term care, we’re looking at trying to get them to us as quickly as possible. But with that, we’re getting more residents who have more medical needs.”
According to Ridgley, the new RN will allow them to have two on every shift, as well as be better equipped for those specific medical needs. The social worker, she says, will help manage the strain on everyone in the home.
“We’ve noticed even before the pandemic that residents and family members, as well as staff members, are needing more support,” says Ridgley. “Being able to provide that in the home, that social worker will be able to help with relationships, help with residents who are palliative or end-of-life, support staff members through different scenarios they might have, and just be there as a support in general.”
On the PSW side, Ridgley says they hope to fill some of the new positions through the PSW Fast program, which sees local colleges send trainees for placements at the home.
Ridgley says that while The Pines is using temp agencies to get enough staff, these new hires will be for permanent positions. She adds that they hope to put out the hiring call in the next few weeks.