Seniors Advocate Report

Homecare worker_Image Source, Rex 500On September 14, 2015 the BC Office of the Seniors Advocate released a report entitled Caregivers in Distress: More Respite Needed. Generally, the latest report from the Seniors Advocate is focused on one aspect of support for caregivers – namely, providing respite from caregiving duties. In B.C., as noted in the report, respite is primarily achieved through three provincially funded programs: adult day programs, home support, and respite beds. The report, although it includes no recommendations, suggests the need to increase access to adult day programs, greater home support, and access to respite beds. It also reports that B.C. has a caregiver distress rate 45% greater than Alberta, yet clients in Alberta are accessing more home support for less complex needs. The report also suggests perhaps moving respite beds out of existing care homes to dedicated facilities. As noted on page 20 of the report “the current model places the overwhelming majority of respite beds within residential care facilities where they might account for 5% or less of the total beds.”

It also observes that the model of dedicated respite care facilities, of which there are a few in the province, holds promise of a better outcome for clients and their stressed caregivers. It suggests that dedicated respite facilities, or dedicated units within a facility, can develop programs that recognize the transitory nature of respite. Assessment, treatment, and therapies geared to clients who primarily live independently in the community can be more effectively administered if there is a group of 10 or more respite clients. For further information click here. For copy of the full report click here. The Seniors Advocate has outlined that their office plans to release future reports on caregivers. The BCCPA has also responded to this report, which you can find by clicking here.