This collection of Essential Care Partner (ECP) Resources is intended to support Ontario long-term care (LTC) homes with designing, implementing, and/or strengthening an ECP program to ensure that ECPs are able to enter LTC homes to fulfill their vital role, regardless of outbreak status.
The resources available here were co-designed by a team that included members of the research team, LTC team members and leaders, LTC stakeholder organization representatives, and care partners. We also engaged in usability testing with residents and family care partners who provided key feedback. This partnership group worked collaboratively to create a suite of resources that promotes person-centered culture by integrating essential care partners into the caregiving teams in LTC homes. The content of these resources is informed by survey and interview data with residents, care partners, and LTC team members.
Magic of Connection: Essential Partners in Care
This 5-min video explores the crucial role fulfilled by family and friends of residents living in LTC homes. For more details, see 11-min video below.
[Quick note on terminology: Many terms have been used to describe family and friends who regularly enter LTC homes to support a resident. We use the term “essential care partner.” We use this term because research shows that these people play an essential role in the homes, and because they provide this role through a relationship—a partnership—with the resident and the care team. Other terms that may be used include essential caregiver, family caregiver, and designated care partner.]
The ECP implementation guide assists LTC homes with designing, implementing, and/or strengthening their ECP program. The guide includes steps for implementation, as well as helpful tips and techniques.
The Essential Care Partners are Essential infographic resource explains the importance and benefits of the ECP role. LTC homes may adapt this resource to create posters, brochures, or other materials in the home, or include in presentations.
The Magic of Connection: Essential Partners in Care video can be used to educate families, care partners, residents, and LTC team members and leaders on the importance of the ECP role and to promote a relational view of care. LTC homes may wish to use the video to support team member and ECP orientations. This 11-min version features more details than the shorter 5-min piece above.
The Bruyère Research Institute’s “Presence of Family: (Re)Integrating Essential Care Partners in Ontario’s LTC Homes” research team would like to acknowledge and thank our Advisory Board and all the people who actively participated in the development of this resource by volunteering their time and expertise.
Advisory Board Members
Renate Cowan, Grey County LTC
Paula Doering, Bruyère Continuing Care
Michelle Fleming, Senior Knowledge Broker, Ontario CLRI at Bruyère
Nancy Hall, former Essential Care Partner, Bruyère Continuing Care
Connie Hitzeroth, Essential Care Partner
Pauline Johnston, former Essential Care Partner, Grey Gables
Jennifer Killing, Vice President, Quality & Innovation, peopleCare Communities
Kim Mustard, Resident & Family Services Manager, Grey Gables
Zsofia Orosz, Ontario CLRI at Bruyère
Sam Peck, Family Councils Ontario Executive Director
Lisa Raffoul, Patient Advocate, Hotel Dieu-Grace Healthcare
Lisa Salapatek, Ontario Caregiver Organization
Tanya Sippel-McIntosh, Essential Care Partner
Petek Yurt, AdvantAge Ontario
Nancy Cooper, Director of Quality & Performance, Ontario Long Term Care Association
Jennifer Cornell, Grey County Director of Long-Term Care
Bonnie Daros PRC, The Royal
Jim Gilhuly, LTC Resident
Alison Kilbourn, Ontario Caregiver Organization
Melissa McVie, Director of Education and Communications, Ontario Association of Residents’ Councils (OARC)
Sheri Murphy, Grey County LTC Support Services
Grace Welch, Champlain Region Family Council Network
Steven Wenzowski, LTC Resident
Principal Investigator: James Conklin, PhD, Investigator, Bruyère Research Institute
Douglas Archibald, PhD, Investigator, Bruyère Research Institute
Jacobi Elliott, PhD, Scientist, Lawson Health Research Institute
Amy T. Hsu, PhD, Investigator, Bruyère Research Institute
Anita Kothari, PhD, Professor, School of Health Studies, Western University
Paul Stolee, PhD, Professor, University of Waterloo
Heidi Sveistrup, PhD, CEO/CSO Bruyère Research Institute
We recognize and thank the Change Foundation, and all who participated in the Changing CARE program, as well as the Ontario Caregiver Organization, for their significant efforts in engaging the voices of patients, family caregivers, and healthcare providers in meaningful change initiatives. These initiatives laid a powerful foundation for the work of our team and others.
This material was produced in part with funding from the government of Ontario through The Ontario Centres for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care at Bruyère, Healthcare Excellence Canada, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and the Centre for Aging + Brain Health Innovation. The views expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the views of the funders or the province of Ontario.