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(as introduced)

3rd Session, 63rd General Assembly
Nova Scotia
70 Elizabeth II, 2021


Private Member's Bill


Commission of Inquiry into Long-term Care Act


Susan Leblanc
Dartmouth North

First Reading: March 23, 2021

Second Reading:

Third Reading:


An Act to Establish a Commission
of Inquiry into Long-term Care

WHEREAS the World Health Organization declared a pandemic of the infectious disease COVID-19 on March 11, 2020;

AND WHEREAS Nova Scotia suffered 65 deaths due to COVID-19 in the first year of the pandemic;

AND WHEREAS in Canada the vast majority of COVID-19-related deaths in the first year of the pandemic were in long-term care facilities;

AND WHEREAS of the COVID-19-related deaths in Nova Scotia in 2020, 53 occurred in one long-term care facility;

AND WHEREAS an initial review of the long-term care sector carried out for the Department of Health and Wellness in the summer of 2020 determined that there are problems in long-term care facilities, such as critical staff shortages and lack of infection control;

THEREFORE be it enacted by the Governor and Assembly as follows:

1 This Act may be cited as the Commission of Inquiry into Long-term Care Act.

2 In this Act,

(a) "Commission" means the commission established pursuant to Section 3;

(b) "facility" means a nursing home or residential care facility licensed by the Department of Health and Wellness under the Homes for Special Care Act and funded by the Department;

(c) "Minister" means the Minister of Health and Wellness;

(d) "resident" means a resident of a facility.

3 (1) Subject to Section 7, the Minister shall establish, by May 31, 2021, a commission of inquiry to investigate the state of long-term care in the Province.

(2) The Commission must include one or more members of the Minister’s Expert Advisory Panel on Long-term Care, if the member or members are available and willing to act on the Commission.

4 The Commission has all the powers, privileges and immunities of a commissioner pursuant to the Public Inquiries Act.

5 The Commission shall investigate the state of long-term care in the Province and make recommendations respecting

(a) funding for facilities;

(b) staffing levels at facilities;

(c) minimum hours of care per resident per day;

(d) timelines for the phase-out of multi-resident living units;

(e) accounting of capital needs of existing facilities;

(f) potential need for additional facilities;

(g) changes that may be required regarding the conditions of work for staff at facilities;

(h) inspection routines and standards;

(i) data gathering and reporting; and

(j) maintaining safe operating conditions and residents’ quality of life during a health-based state of emergency.

6 The Commission shall, not later than November 15, 2021,

(a) prepare and submit to the Minister a report containing the Commission’s findings and recommendations; and

(b) make the report public.

7 The money required for the purpose of this Act must be paid out of money appropriated for that purpose by the Legislature.


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