Seniors Day Program Cut in Delta

The following article appeared in the Vancouver Sun today regarding cuts to the Cross Roads Adult Day Program in Delta. Earlier this week BC’s Senior’s Advocate Isobel Mackenzie released a report identifying the need for more adult day programs for seniors in BC.

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Anna Chang fights back tears whenever she thinks about having to leave Cross Roads Adult Day Program in Delta when it closes its doors permanently on Oct. 2.

The program, which started in 1988, has lost its $364,000 annual funding from the Fraser Health Authority.

Van Sun feature banner genericThe health authority says it isn’t cutting funding for its adult day programs, but is instead redirecting those dollars to other centres in Surrey where the majority of the day program’s clients live.

“I am very, very disappointed. It doesn’t make sense to me. I like coming here very much: the people, the facilities. I’m going to miss them very much,” said Chang, who attends Cross Roads four days a week.

The 69-year-old, who suffered a stroke and can’t use her right hand and needs a walker, has been coming to the Delta program for the past five years.

“I have my baths here; they cut my toenails. I’m really taken care of here. I’m spoiled,” said Chang.

She said she’s been told that she’s being moved to another facility in White Rock.

I am very, very disappointed. It doesn’t make sense to me. I like coming here very much: the people, the facilities. I’m going to miss them very much

CEO Jane Devji said the loss of the program is a big concern for many of the harder-to-place clients.

“We didn’t just (serve) Delta but we have people from Surrey, Langley, White Rock. There are many people with behavioural issues who can’t manage in other (adult day) programs and would get kicked out but we would take them in,” she said.

Devji said the health authority told her it is cancelling the program because Cross Roads took in clients from outside its area, and will instead be using the money for home care support in the Guildford area of Surrey.

“It was a big shock to me. We’ve made a difference in many people’s lives and many people have had a good transition to a residential program when it was necessary,” she said.

Devji explained the adult day program is part of the Delta View Rehabilitation Program, which has an 80-bed residential program adjacent to it so if day program clients need full-time residential care, they could be easily moved. Delta View also has another 212 beds to care for seniors with complex needs.

“It’s like a campus of care and now one piece has been taken away from us,” she said.

“This kind of program should be expanding, not closing.”

Although the Delta View program is closing, the money saved will help create 532 adult day program spaces elsewhere, said Catherine Barnardo, the interim executive director for Centralized Home Health Services at Fraser Health Authority.

“In 2014, we looked at who was accessing our adult day program services at Delta View and learned that 85 per cent (37 out of 43 clients) using the program live in North Delta, Surrey and White Rock. To better serve these clients at locations that are more convenient and accessible to them, we are moving these services closer to their homes and investing in a new program in Surrey-Guildford.”

Read more in Vancouver Sun…