Home Care

What are home care services?

  • Home care services help people with a frailty or with acute, chronic, palliative or rehabilitative health care needs to independently live in their community and co-ordinate and manage an admission to facility care when living in the community is not a viable alternative.
  • Home care services include nursing, personal support / homemaker, therapy (including physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech language pathology, social work, nutrition / dietetics), medical supplies and equipment, and case management.
  • In home care, it is expected that the family and/or friends will provide care to supplement the formal service provision. An estimated 26% of Canadians cared for a family member or close friend with a serious health problem in 2006.

What is expected of the family and/or friends of an individual receiving home care?

  • Family caregivers provide 80% of care at home, supplementing the government-funded service.
  • The average family caregiver spends 20 hours/week caring for a period of 4 years; one quarter of caregivers spends 40 hours/week.
  • Service Provider Organizations can be contracted to deliver care to individuals and through other privately‐insured employment plans and/or government programs.  Home Care Ontario estimates that 150,000 Ontarians purchase an additional 20 million visits/hours of home care services annually in order to remain at home.

What influences a nurse’s work enjoyment?

  • Differences in nurses’ work enjoyment, satisfaction with time for care and job security varies by agency but is not related to corporate structure.

Home Care and the General Population

  • “Home care is where we can get the best value for money and the highest quality of care for people.” Deb Matthews, Minister of Health & Long-Term Care in the Legislature, March 20, 2012.
  • There is no conclusive evidence to show that corporate structure determines cost effectiveness.
  • 84% of Ontarians agree with the provincial government promoting home care as an alternative to health care in institutions such as hospitals and long-term care facilities.
  • A well-resourced home care system is imperative to address the aging population in Ontario, which will mean more people with chronic conditions and fewer health care providers.
  • 55% of Ontarians are more likely to say that they will need to rely on a public system for home or health care in their retirement years.


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