Bayshore Home Health recognizes the need for nation-wide government support of family caregivers

- Vote To Support Caregivers social media campaign asks Canadians to "vote" for public funding for family caregivers -

MISSISSAUGA, ON, Sept. 26, 2011 /CNW/ - Bayshore Home Health, a leading Canadian health care company, has kicked off a new social media campaign aimed at garnering public support for increased government funding and supportive policies for family and informal caregivers.

Recent Canadian statistics show that our seniors' population is steadily on the rise, and expected to reach 6.7 million in 2021 and 9.2 million by 2041 (representing nearly one in four Canadians). In fact, the growth of our seniors' population will account for close to half of the growth of the overall Canadian population in the next four decades.1 As our seniors' population increases, so too does the percentage of middle-aged adults who comprise a demographic that juggles employment with the responsibility of caring for both elderly loved ones as well as their own family. Until now, the contributions of these family caregivers have largely gone unnoticed. Bayshore Home Health is encouraging governments to support this growing group of "care champions," who are rapidly becoming a formidable force in the future of Canada's health care system and significantly reducing its financial burden.

"Family caregivers make invaluable contributions to Canada's health care system and require and deserve the support of our provincial and federal governments," says Stuart Cottrelle, President of Bayshore Home Health. "Vote for Caregivers is an eight-week campaign encouraging all Canadians to log onto Facebook, share their stories and vote to support family caregivers." The Vote to Support Caregivers Facebook page can be found at www.facebook.com/votetosupportcaregivers.

With the future outlook of an aging population, Bayshore is urging Canadians to make the case for provincial and federal funding initiatives aimed at reducing financial stress and improving the lives of family caregivers - a program that if implemented, would be akin to the notable benefits of providing parental leave for parents to care for their young families.

An encouraging debate is currently underway in Ontario's general election, where some political parties are taking action and making the necessary steps toward providing  caregivers with the support they need. For instance, the Ontario Liberals recently committed to providing eight weeks of unpaid job security to those individuals who need to take time off work to care for a sick loved one.  The eight-week family caregiver leave program would give Ontarians time to care for family members suffering from a serious illness. The federal government has also recognized the importance of supporting family care giving with its own commitment to increase funding for community-based home.

"Family care giving is a rewarding, yet stressful undertaking - an around the clock job, often adding an additional 20 hours per week caring for a loved one, over a four-year period," Cottrelle continues. "Bayshore Home Health supports family caregivers and will be taking the Vote to Support Caregivers campaign results to policy makers across the country, advocating for stronger government policies and the funding needed to care for our loved ones."

Bayshore Home Health is an organization that offers solutions and resources to family caregivers to help ease the burden on the caregiver's own health. Bayshore encourages all levels of government to support family caregivers by providing the necessary funding to ensure public policies are established nation-wide.

About Bayshore Home Health
Bayshore Home Health has been enhancing the quality of life, dignity and independence of Canadians in their homes since 1966. Canadian owned and operated, it is the country's largest provider of home and community health care services, with more than 50 home care offices and two-dozen community care clinics. It delivers nursing, personal care, home support and companion services to more than 70,000 Canadians annually, and also offers nurse and caregiver staffing services to health care organizations and corporate clients. Its subsidiaries provide specialty pharmacy, infusion and pharmaceutical support services (Bayshore Specialty Rx), physiotherapy and rehabilitation services (Bayshore Therapy & Rehab), and dialysis services (Bayshore Dialysis). More information can be found at www.bayshore.ca.

1 Global News; The Aging Journey; 2008

SOURCE Bayshore Home Health

For further information:

Sarah Shelest
Optimum Public Relations
Phone: (416) 934-8082
Email: sarah.shelest@cossette.com

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