August 16, 2023 (Burnaby, B.C.) – BC Care Providers Association (BCCPA) is pleased that seniors care issues were featured prominently within the 2024 budget consultation report released by the Selecting Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services on August 3.
With seniors struggling to access continuing care services across the province, the committee’s attention on seniors’ issues is merited. In 2022, 81 percent of alternate level of care (ALC) days in acute care hospitals were for seniors. This represents seniors who are ready to be discharged but have no appropriate place to go.
“This is very concerning,” says BCCPA CEO Terry Lake, “but what’s more troublesome is that without immediate action, the situation is expected to get much, much worse. Investments are needed now, to stem one of the most significant health care crises the province has ever experienced.”
Each year, the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services holds province-wide public consultations on the next provincial budget, and issues recommendations as a result of these hearings.
Annually, BCCPA delivers a submission to the Select Standing Committee which highlights opportunities to strengthen quality of life and quality of care for B.C. seniors. The submission is informed through stakeholder consultation and research which highlights best practices from across Canada and internationally.
This year, BCCPA and EngAge BC’s submission to the Members of the Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services asks the committee to recommend immediate action in three areas:
- investments in infrastructure, so that seniors can access the assisted living and long-term care services they need, when and where they need them;
- increased investments in staffing and direct care hours to support higher acuity residents; and
- tax credits to help seniors access family paid home support and independent living services so that they can age in the “right place.”
The Committee’s report included the following recommendations, which focused on seniors care and were informed by BCCPA’s submission:
- Provide funding to expand long-term care cares.
- Providing additional funding to long-term care homes to meet a minimum of four hours of daily care per resident and improve oversight, transparency and reporting.
- Support seniors to age in place by increasing and standardizing funding for home care, home support, and respite.
A full copy of BCCPA’s 2024 Budget Submission, titled No Time to Wait: Taking Action to Support B.C. Seniors, is available here.