I am pleased to say that seniors are a priority for the BC NDP. I firmly believe this is essential. The BC Liberals have neglected seniors. The Seniors Advocate reported earlier this year that 91% of the publicly funded residential care homes in BC do not meet minimum staffing requirements. The Seniors Advocate also reported that home support hours were cut. In some cases, the result is so bad that seniors are forced to go a week without a bath.
The BC NDP will take concrete measures to correct this dismal record.
We’ll provide funding to increase the length of home support visits and we’ll expand the scope of services provided in home care. Boosting home support will reduce stress on seniors, their families and other unpaid caregivers.
The BC NDP believe it’s imperative that residential care providers are properly funded so they can meet at least the minimum staffing requirements necessary to ensure quality care. So we’ll increase support for residential care providers while at the same time demanding accountability to ensure they are meeting the quality standards required. We will also conduct a systematic review to establish and maintain safe staffing levels going forward.
We will also broaden support for the Shelter Aid for Elderly Renters program (SAFER), which provides eligible, low income seniors with monthly cash payments to enable them to keep renting.
The BC NDP also has a number of platform initiatives that will positively impact all British Columbians, including seniors.
We’ll increase the number of health care professionals, including paramedics, and invest in improving rural health care services, including in the North Island. We’ll introduce innovative approaches to reduce surgical wait times like the Richmond Hip and Knee Replacement Project. It reduced wait times for hip and knee replacements by 75% until the BC Liberals cut it. And the BC NDP will improve medical travel assistance coverage (TAPS) so patients will be able to take the fastest, most direct route to medical care be it by air or ferry.
For more from Trevena on seniors’ issues visit campbellrivermirror.com