The Reform of Home Care Services in Ontario: Opportunity Lost or Lesson Learned?
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BACKGROUND: With the release of the Romanow Commission report, Canadian governments are poised to consider the creation of a national home care program. If occupational and physical therapists are to have input in shaping such a program, they will need to learn from lost opportunities of the past. PURPOSE: This paper provides an overview of recent reforms to home care in Ontario with an emphasis on rehabilitation services. METHOD: Data were collected from documents and 28 key informant interviews with rehabilitation professionals. RESULTS: Home care in Ontario has evolved in a piecemeal manner without rehabilitation professionals playing a prominent role in program design. PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: Rehabilitation services play a critical role in facilitating hospital discharges, minimizing readmissions, and improving the quality of peoples' lives. Canadians will benefit if occupational and physical therapists seize the unique opportunity before them to provide meaningful input into creating a national home care program.
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