EDMONTON, Oct. 15, 2014 /CNW/ - The College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta (CARNA) welcomes yesterday's announcement that Alberta Health Services will open 464 continuing care spaces over the next 12 months but has concerns regarding resources.
"We welcome the announcement that Alberta Health Services will be opening 464 continuing care spaces over the next year but having a space is just one part of the equation," says CARNA President Shannon Spenceley. "As recommended in the recent Auditor General's report, it is essential to provide older adults living in long-term care facilities with an adequate number and level of staff every day of the week. Opening new continuing care spaces must be accompanied with sufficient staffing to meet the needs of the residents occupying them."
The Report of the Auditor-General, October 2014 recommended that Alberta Health Services (AHS) develop a system to periodically verify that facilities provide residents with an adequate number and level of staff, every day of their operation. It also noted that the goal of care for most residents in long-term care is to best manage their existing health conditions and prevent avoidable deterioration while maintaining their quality of life as well as possible.
"We are pleased with the announcement that there will be a home care capacity review because home care is not adequately resourced at this time," says CARNA CEO Mary-Anne Robinson. "Home care needs to be able to provide reliable, timely care for vulnerable older adults and others with complex health conditions so that their condition doesn't worsen and result in hospitalization. Hospitalization has been shown to result in a rapid deterioration of cognitive and physical condition among frail older adults as well as being the most costly way to provide care."
CARNA is the professional and regulatory body for Alberta's more than 35,000 registered nurses, including nurses in direct care, education, research and administration as well as nurse practitioners. Its mandate is to protect the public by ensuring that Albertans receive effective, safe and ethical care by registered nurses.
SOURCE: College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta
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