More care hours needed - Published February 23, 2010

To The Editor:
The following is addressed to Kelly Lamrock, Minister of Social Development and Brian Kenny, Minister of Seniors and the Healthy Aging Secretariat:

At their last meeting the family committee of the Foyer Saint-Antoine discussed the lack of care hours in nursing homes.

Family members recently participated in a quality of care evaluation which underlined the need for additional staff (care hours) in nursing homes for activities such as bathing, feeding, timely response to calls for assistance, etc.
We have been recently made aware of a pilot project which would examine the need and impact of additional care hours in nursing homes but are concerned with the fact that this study will take months to unfold.

We wish to remind you that an increase to 3.5 care hours per resident per day was part of your election platform in 2006, which was once again pledged two years later, and that implementation was to take place before the end of your present mandate.

While the recently announced construction and expansion of nursing homes throughout the province are welcome measures to ease the pressures of an aging population on the health care system, this does little for the current residents who are dependant on staff for their daily needs such as toileting, feeding and hygiene.

Geneva L├ęger,
Chair, Family Committee,