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Meeting seniors care needs today and tomorrow

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  |  Posted: Thursday, Jun 05, 2014 06:00 am

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Re: ďAirdrie MLA to host Seniors Town Hall meeting,Ē May 29

Dear Editor,

Making sure that we have safe, high-quality continuing care for our senior parents and grandparents is one of the top concerns for Albertans - and a priority for the Alberta government.

There are more than 22,500 people in our continuing care residences, and most of them are seniors.

Thatís a population of about half the size of Airdrie. And with another 100 people turning 65 every day in Alberta, demand for continuing care is expected to continue rising.

To meet that demand, the Alberta government has undertaken an unprecedented expansion of continuing care, opening 3,000 new spaces in the past three years alone.

Thatís an increase of more than 14 per cent. And still more spaces are coming on stream all the time.

These new spaces mean more seniors are able to get the care they need close to home, and more couples are able to stay together even if they have different needs.

But simply building new care spaces isnít going to be enough on its own to meet the growing demand for continuing care.

Thatís why the Alberta government is also making strategic investments to expand seniorsí supports in the community, including better access to primary care and more home care for seniors who can safely be treated at home.

In the past three years, Alberta has increased home care spending by almost $100 million, to about $500 million a year. And this investment is paying off, as last year more than 105,000 Albertans received care at home.

By increasing our investments in community and home care, our government is supporting seniorís independence and helping seniors stay at home as long as they wish to be there.

And when seniors need a higher level of care, our focus on building new care spaces means weíre able to provide the right level of care in the right place at the right time.

Your Alberta government shares your commitment to caring for our seniors - and you can count on our government to continue building a care system that is right for Albertaís seniors and their families, and sustainable for all Albertans over the long term.

Dave Quest,

Associate Minister of Seniors for the Government of Alberta


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