TORONTO, May 20, 2014 /CNW/ - In the midst of the province's election, the Ontario Long Term Care Association (OLTCA) warns that the aging population and the growing medical needs of seniors require urgent action by the next government to ensure that Ontario's long term care homes can provide the care seniors deserve.
"The needs of seniors entering long term care homes have risen dramatically in recent years," said Candace Chartier, CEO of OLTCA. "Too many seniors are living in homes that need to be rebuilt and modernized. Too many seniors with Alzheimer's or other types of dementia aren't getting the supports they need to ensure their comfort and safety. Our advocacy campaign proposes solutions to these issues and aims to make change happen."
OLTCA's plan for action, "Better Seniors' Care: It's Time." identifies key challenges facing seniors in long term care homes and puts forward several recommendations to provide seniors with better care, including the following:
- OLTCA is calling to immediately develop and implement a plan to modernize homes identified as needing redevelopment, increasing the quality of care to the 35,000 seniors who live in these homes.
- OLTCA is calling for the establishment of specialized behavioural supports in every home to develop a higher level of patient-centred care for the 61% of seniors living with Alzheimer's and other dementias.
- OLTCA is calling for additional resources to address chronic understaffing and enhance care provider roles to better care for the 93% of seniors who require additional support to manage chronic diseases.
To help raise awareness of the issues facing seniors in long term care and build support for their plan, OLTCA has initiated a province-wide tour to meet with residents and their families, and unveiled a comprehensive advocacy campaign.
A recent poll completed by OLTCA found that more than 90% of Ontarians are concerned about insufficient staffing levels and about the deteriorating condition of long term care homes in the province.
"We know that Ontarians share our concern about our ability to care for their parents and grandparents," said Chartier. "Our campaign provides them with the tools they need to do something about it. We want the public to know that with the right level of resources, long term care homes are expertly positioned to provide high quality and supportive care. Ontario seniors deserve that."
For more details on OLTCA's' campaign visit: betterseniorscare.ca
About the Ontario Long Term Care Association
The Ontario Long Term Care Association (OLTCA) is Canada's largest long term care association representing charitable, not-for-profit, private, and municipal long term care operators. The Association's 441 member homes are funded and regulated by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. OLTCA members provide care, accommodation and services to approximately 70,000 seniors annually.
SOURCE: Ontario Long Term Care Association
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