TORONTO, Dec. 13, 2016 /CNW/ - Seniors living in new or newly renovated long-term care homes are experiencing first-hand the tremendous benefits these homes provide for their care and comfort. With 90% of residents living with some level of cognitive impairment in long-term care homes province-wide, newer homes create a better, safer environment for all residents and staff.
"The needs of seniors in the Greater Toronto Area entering long-term care have risen dramatically in recent years," said Candace Chartier, CEO of the Ontario Long Term Care Association. "Too many seniors are living in homes that need to be rebuilt and modernized. Too many seniors with dementia aren't getting the supports they need to ensure their comfort and safety. Our seniors deserve better care."
At a long-term care home in Toronto, Ms. Chartier outlined the challenges facing seniors in the city:
- More than 7,300 seniors in Toronto (49% of those living in long-term care) are living in long-term care homes that are outdated and need to be modernized.
- The number of seniors in Toronto over the age of 75 is expected to grow by 34% in the next 10 years and 94% in the next 20 years. On average, there will be an increase of 27 seniors per day until 2026.
The Association's plan for action, "Better Seniors' Care," is calling for immediate action to improve seniors' care in Ontario, including:
- Implementing a plan to modernize every long-term care home in Ontario that has been classified as outdated by the province – increasing the quality of care to the 35,000 seniors who live in these homes.
- Ensuring seniors outside of urban centres have sufficient access to care close to home.
- Providing a more predictable approach to funding and ensuring specialized resources are enhanced to support residents with increasing needs.
To help raise awareness of the challenges facing seniors living in long-term care, the Association is undertaking a province-wide tour to meet with residents and families. Today's stop was at Kensington Gardens.
"Thanks to our dedicated staff here at Kensington Gardens, we continue to provide the highest quality of care possible to our residents." said William O'Neill, Executive Director of Kensington Health Centre and the Ontario Long Term Care Association's Board Chair. "But we know there is more work to be done to ensure all long-term care residents across Ontario get the care they require, as their needs continue to increase."
"We need our elected officials to make providing better seniors' care a priority for the long-term. We know that Ontarians share our concern about our ability to care for their parents and grandparents," said Chartier.
"Our seniors need to know that when they can no longer be cared for at home, the long-term care services they need will be there for them. The time for action is now."
About the Ontario Long Term Care Association
The Ontario Long Term Care Association is the largest association of long-term care providers in Ontario and the only association that represents the full mix of long-term care operators — private, not-for-profit, charitable, and municipal. The Association represents nearly 70% of Ontario's 630 long-term care homes, located in communities across the province. Our members provide care and accommodation services to more than 70,000 residents annually.
SOURCE Ontario Long Term Care Association
For further information: Adrian Kupesic, Director of Public Affairs & Governance, Ontario Long Term Care Association,647-256-3492, [email protected]