Ask the Expert - Questions on Eldercare

Hi, My great aunt currently lives in St. Anne Manitoba. She is 80 years old and lives in her own apartment. She is fairly healthy and does not really need assistance. We are looking to bring her to Calgary, Alberta and find her a place at a plus 55 residence living facility. What are the key things we have to do to make this happen? Will she have access to Alberta Health Care? She also only receives old age pension and something else so she is low income. Will this affect finding a place for her?
Thank you

Please refer to the following answer on our website: https://www.seniorszen.com/faq#t22n1021

Best regards,
SeniorsZen.com Support

The short answer is - you can't avoid interruption when a senior is depending on provincially-provided senior care services, so here are some things to investigate right now:

- If your parent is now using senior services such as care in Manitoba, enlist their caseworker's help to liaise ASAP with their counterpart in BC to transfer services. If they don't know whom to contact,  check BC's ministry of health's 'services for seniors' to identify the service location that would apply to your parent, based on what their BC address will be.

- Even with the best efforts of both caseworkers, prepare to provide care privately, either yourselves or using the help of an agency - the case worker in BC may have an agency or two to recommend. 

- Inquire at your pharmacy about the protocol for transferring prescriptions from Manitoba to BC - usually, the pharmacy can do so, provided they receive an original prescription, so a visit to your parent's doctor may be needed before they leave.

- If your parent will be moving to a retirement residence, they will be able to use the house physician. If not, you may have a challenge finding them a doctor, so make inquiries at your doctor's office as to whether they are accepting new patients (seniors, specifically) and if not, where you could be referred.

- In terms of health insurance, there is usually a 3-month residency requirement before you can apply for provincial insurance. Medical services may be covered by Manitoba insurance during that time but contact the ministry of health for both provinces as soon as possible to be sure. Each case is different so be sure you review things thoroughly before your parent departs.

Looks like you'll be busy! Best of luck with your parent's move!

Pat M. Irwin, BA, AICB, CPCA 

President, ElderCareCanada 

Professor, Distance Learning, Centennial College 

www.eldercarecanada.ca 

My mother currently lives independently in an apartment and has no other family members to care for her in Winnipeg. Since most of her children live in the surrounding Vancouver area, we have made a decision to move her in Surrey, BC and temporarily live with my sister (who will be the care-giver) while she recovers from her fracture and search for assisted living accommodations. What necessary financial arrangements do we need to make to transfer her government pension so that we can transition her into her new living situation? Who do we need to notify? Thank you for your prompt response.

This is more straightforward than you fear!

For federal government pensions, your mother still qualifies; all you do is change her mailing address with Canada Post, then write to Canada Revenue (CRA) at Sudbury Tax Centre, 1050 Notre Dame Sudbury ON P3A 5C, giving her name, SIN and new address.

For provincial pensions, contact Manitoba's Pension Commission -visit http://www.gov.mb.ca/labour/pension/ - to be sure there is no reason your mother should not receive her pension. She should still be fully eligible since it is based on where she lived and worked throughout her life; where she now lives should not affect it. They, too, will need full change of address information.

Pat M. Irwin, BA, AICB, CPCA 
President, ElderCareCanada 
Professor, Distance Learning, Centennial College 
www.eldercarecanada.ca 
416-487-6248

I am a senior. Have been looking for a wheelchair accessible apartment for fifteen years. I have reached out to organizations for help as I wish the apartment to be in one city, but at present I live in a different city. I am very independent, and use Home Instead ten hours a week, no medical care.

There are organizations in different provinces that can assist seniors with disabilities. For example, in Ontario, you can contact this organization: http://www.archdisabilitylaw.ca/

Best regards,
SeniorsZen.com Support

Depending on their mandate, a retirement home may also accept mentally challenged or mentally ill adults who may or may not be seniors. The theory is that care and support services are similar, and that a more diverse population benefits everyone. It is also another source of income for the home.

Sometimes this population is housed in certain areas of the home - maybe the lower floors - and sometimes they are integrated within the building.

I have known of retirement residences who, for example, accept Down's Syndrome clients who have 'graduated' from the youth facilities when they reached age 18. The mix of this type or resident and seniors can be invigorating for all residents.

With regard to mental health clients, they would not have been accepted by the home if their condition were not managed by behaviours and/or medication and should therefore not pose a danger to other residents. If this is perceived, approach the administrator.

If there are concerns or questions, a resident or family member should feel free to speak to the administrator who should explain the policy and be open to questions or suggestions.

If this arrangement is not working well for your family member, be sure to inquire about this potential issue when searching for another retirement home. However I'd advise giving it time. Chances are, everyone will benefit in the long run.

 

Pat M. Irwin, BA, AICB, CPCA 
President, ElderCareCanada 
Professor, Distance Learning, Centennial College 
www.eldercarecanada.ca 

We need to get my mom home as it is only my sister in Edmonton and is overwhelmed the rest of the family is here and can spend more time with mom in personal care.

Yes, you can indeed move your mom but here are some very important things to check out first:

 

1. level of care required

 

Confirm what ‘permanent care’ really means in this case. Is it 24/7 heavy care, or does it just mean that Mom cannot live alone with no supervision. What are her personal care needs, can she wash and dress herself, feed herself, go to the bathroom alone or does she need help? Can she walk without assistance, or if not, is a walker enough, or is it a wheelchair? All these details allow you to research appropriate housing in Winnipeg.

 

2. provincial health care coverage

 

Check the Manitoba ministry of health’s website to see when health coverage can begin, and until then, how the two provinces reimburse each other for health care while out of province. If necessary, look into private health care coverage for the interim.

 

3. availability of suitable care and housing in Winnipeg

 

Based on what you’ve learned in Step 1, are you looking for long-term care in a nursing home, or assisted living in a retirement home? Nursing homes cater to heavier care needs and are usually funded by the provincial ministry of health. Retirement homes are usually privately owned and cater to more independent living, with extra personal care and nursing in their ‘assisted living’ areas.

 

4. wait lists if publicly funded – with Plan B for waiting and its costs

 

Because nursing homes are publicly funded, their cost is about $2,000 per month for a private room, and the fee includes all meals, activities and care. Retirement homes are more costly, with the suite starting at $3,800 and additional costs for care ranging from $500-$1,000 a month.

 

Because of their affordability, nursing homes often have waiting lists of 4-12 months. If the home you are interested in has this type of waiting list, you will have to develop a plan to either leave your mother where she is, or make alternate plans, such as bringing her to your home with care, or into a retirement home, until a nursing home spot becomes available. You will have to be very specific about the costs involved and be sure they are affordable for the time limit you expect.

 

Pat M. Irwin, BA, AICB, CPCA
President, ElderCareCanada
Professor, Distance Learning, Centennial College
www.eldercarecanada.ca

Questions:

1) What is the relationship between a seniors ability to live in the various forms of retirement communities and the access to senior funding?

2) Is a senior able to live in various forms of retirement communities if they have income plus other income from investments, sale of home, RRSP’s etc.?

3) Would seniors be able to sustain living in a private retirement community if they had no other form of income besides CPP?

Answer:

These three questions are linked, so I’m going to address them together:

A retirement residence is designed for seniors who can live independently or with up to a maximum of 3 hours of support – not heavy care such as intravenous, tube feeding, 2-person transfers of immobile people, etc. Retirement homes are usually privately owned – some of the big Canadian chains are Chartwell, Revera, Delmanor, Amica – and they are licenced to operate by the provincial government’s ministry of health regarding their operations. These include such things as building safety, cleanliness, food management, employee standards and adherence to other rules and guidelines.

A retirement home holds a landlord-tenant relationship with its residents. Suites are rented by the month under a tenancy agreement. The rent includes a rate for the actual suite, then additional costs for support and care such as assistance with showers, dressing, toileting, being escorted to meals, etc. A resident can leave at any time given 60 days of notice. This often happens when a resident comes to require heavier care and needs to move to long-term care, also known as a nursing home.

Potential retirement home residents must complete a basic medical which outlines their overall health, any chronic conditions, medications and support needs. Based on that, they are assessed and accepted as being someone the residence can care for. 

Monthly rental is set entirely by the residence, usually based on 1. the square footage of the suite and 2. the level of support or care the potential resident might need.  For example, a dementia client would require much more care than someone who is fully independent. These costs may range from $2,500 - $6,500 for the suite, depending on its size and location in Canada; additional care is quoted separately and is tax deductible. Care costs are usually priced at about $25 per hour, so 3 hours per day at $25 per hour is about $75 per day or about $2,400 per month. In large cities, a retirement residence can run to $5,500-$9,500 per month.

Canada Pension allowance (CPP) would not be sufficient to cover this type of cost. Most people afford it from their employer pension, savings, investments and the sale of their family home.

Financial assets such as RSP’s, RIFs or investments have nothing whatsoever to do with admission to a retirement home. If you can be accepted medically, and pay your rent, you are accepted as a resident. There are no government subsidies for retirement residence living. 

Governments do subsidize nursing homes. Admission to a nursing home is controlled by the provincial ministry of health. Admission is based on a detailed questionnaire regarding the applicant’s health needs, which are defined as ‘extensive’ or ’24-hour care’. There are choices such as ward, semi-private and private rooms, all with different rates. These rates are set by the provincial ministry of health and are far less than the actual market rate for these services; the government heavily subsidies the cost so that rates are affordable. For example, a private room might have a monthly cost of $2,100; a semi-private $1,900 and a ward room (4 to a room) might be $1,600. These amounts can usually be covered by a person’s Canada Pension allowance (CPP); private savings might be needed for a private room.

Admission to a nursing home is based on medical need only, not assets or income.

 

Pat M. Irwin, BA, AICB, CPCA 
President, ElderCareCanada 
Professor, Distance Learning, Centennial College 
[email protected] 
www.eldercarecanada.ca 

 

My husband who is a veteran and has 34 years service in the military does not qualify for the payment of a wheelchair ramp. A year ago on Feb. 9th 2016 he had brain surgery and needs 24 hour care. Our insurance paid 80% for a wheel chair and a hospital bed, but would not cover the ramp. Could you please help me to get a grant to help with the ramp outside our house.

Government funds for accessibility:

i. The Home Adaptations for Independence (HAFI) program provides financial assistance to help eligible low-income seniors and people with disabilities in British Columbia to continue to live in the comfort of their home.

Get more information at: http://www.bchousing.org/Options/Home_Renovations

ii. CMHC Home adaptation Program - www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca

ii. community funding

The March of Dimes - accessible modifications program - www.marchofdimes.ca

iii. creative ideas:

- Habitat for Humanity's ReStore sell good reconditioned items, which might include a ramp, at very reduced prices

- the major suppliers of ramps usually sell reconditioned/used products - www.portablewheelchairramps.ca, www.mobilitybasics.ca

- service clubs such as Rotary or Lions might be willing to help as a goodwill gesture

 

Pat M. Irwin, BA, AICB, CPCA 
President, ElderCareCanada 
Professor, Distance Learning, Centennial College 
www.eldercarecanada.ca 
416-487-6248

My mother is presently in Extended Care in Penticton, B.C. We are looking at the possibility of bringing her to Alberta, in particular the Red Deer area. I have determined that to come from B.C. to Alberta, that you have to wait 3 months to get on Alberta Health Care. I was also told that she would have to be a resident in Alberta for a mimimum of 6 months before she could apply to get into a facility. Can you provide me a number of an organization where I could call and get all of these questions answered? I need to know if there are exceptions if you are not wanting subsidy, what the costs will be out of her pocket, etc. She is currently on subsidy, and is very low income. Thank you.

Hi, 

The facility where your mother is now  needs to contact the the Continuing Care Placement  office  for Central Alberta,,  403-314-6112. They will send the facility a list of information that they need. Once they receive that, they will review it and  put your mother on a waitlist. From outside the province the approved sites are limited and may not be one in Red Deer. She would have  to go to that site for a year before going to another place closer to Red Deer. According to the placement office, there is a huge demand for services and housing so there will be a waiting period, you may  want to be flexible in  the area you choose,  which might make admission faster.  If you move to a  private pay community, you can apply directly from Penticton to the individual community, but  she will still have to  go on a waitlist for a publicly funded place once she is there.   If you choose to go to a completely privately funded community, outside of the system, you could easily pay $6,000 per month   and more, depending on the type and amount of care your mother needs.

Kind regards,

Peter Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC
Diamond Geriatrics Counsellor-Coach
Elderpost.com
288 West 8th Ave Vancouver, BC V5Y 1S6
604-874-7764
778-885-5695 Cell
www.DiamondGeriatrics.com
www.counsellor-coach.ca
www.elderpost.com
 

She would continue to receive her Old Age Security no matter where she is, as she would if she receives the Guaranteed Income Supplement .Her pension is her pension--I am not sure why you would claim it as yours. She still has to pay or at  least file her tax returns.   If you are charging her for living in your house, you might be able to write off some of it as caregiver expenses or you might be just able to claim some expenses as a caregiver. See this link for the Family Caregiver Amount: http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/familycaregiver/  If you are charging her, she might be able to write off some of what she is charged as related to a disability and  care  if she is  eligible for disability tax credits, which would mean filling out the appropriate tax forms.  See  this link for more information on that: http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/disability/   The best thing to do is check with an accountant.

 

Peter S. Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC

Diamond Geriatrics
Counsellor-Coach
Elderpost.com
288 West 8th Ave
Vancouver, BC V5Y 1S6
604-874-7764
778-885-5695 Cell
www.DiamondGeriatrics.com
www.counsellor-coach.ca
www.elderpost.com

The cost of living in a long term care home in Alberta is based solely on income, not on the value of assets. Nursing homes or supportive living accomodations  have a  set cost.  Through the Alberta Seniors Benefit  programme the government provides a subsidy to  people based on their income up to a certain amount to help lower income Albertans afford the cost.  To find out more about subsidies, go to http://www.seniors.alberta.ca/seniors/seniors-benefit-program.html ...
 

Peter S. Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC

Diamond Geriatrics
Counsellor-Coach
Elderpost.com
288 West 8th Ave
Vancouver, BC V5Y 1S6
604-874-7764
778-885-5695 Cell
www.DiamondGeriatrics.com
www.counsellor-coach.ca
www.elderpost.com

Hi,

Your question is a bit unclear to me-- are you  asking about if your mother has a stroke before she moves, or if she moves and then comes back to visit?   But the general response is that when you move from one province to another, it takes 3 months  to be covered.  Until that time,  the original province pays for health care.  So if your mother does move, makes sure she registers as a resident as soon as she can after moving so that she is eligible as soon as is allowed, to receive  other services provided there.

 

Peter S. Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC

Diamond Geriatrics
Counsellor-Coach
Elderpost.com
288 West 8th Ave
Vancouver, BC V5Y 1S6
604-874-7764
778-885-5695 Cell
www.DiamondGeriatrics.com
www.counsellor-coach.ca
www.elderpost.com

CCAC has recently done an assessment...she's independent, needs no medical care. She's has extremely limited range of motion in her arms and cannot without pain raise her arms even to shoulder height. CCAC has said they cannot help because she's in assisted living but as a tenant she should be term living in her home.

I talked to the Long Term Care Action Line and they said that CCAC will not provide care as your mother is in a LHIN supported residence. If she were in her own home, e.g. not LHIN, then they would. If she needs more help than the LHIN can give her, that may indeed mean that she should be in a nursing home, unless you are able to provide extra help privately. I cannot comment on the problems you mentioned, but I hope she has been seen by a physiotherapist and occupational therapist, who help people with Activities of Daily Living and Mobility issues such as the ones you describe, If not, maybe they could help with her issues.

It sounds like you may be at a painful crossroad in terms of "what next" to help your mother and get her what she needs.

Best wishes, 

Peter S. Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC
Counsellor-Coach Diamond Geriatrics
Elderpost.com
www.Counsellor-Coach.ca
www.DiamondGeriatrics.com
www.Elderpost.com
288 West 8th Ave. Vancouver, BC V5Y 1S6
604-874-7764
778-885-5695 Cell
 

Is there a facility in Vancouver B.C. that is independent living that has meals prepared for a resident that has Celiac Disease?

Hi,

Well, there are places that say they will, but what will happen when you arrive there may not live up to your expectations, from my experience. This is not because they will mislead you, but more because they may not fully understand what the needs are of someone with celiac, or who are gluten sensitive. The best way to figure this out is to to to visit and have a meal, explaining beforehand what the situation is exactly. Then, ask to see the menu cycle - what meals are planned over several weeks for different seasons, and figure out if you will be able to eat from this or what you will be able to modify from it. If you like the facility and are considering moving in, sit down with the chef and go over in depth what you would need. If they have a dietitian consultant,talk to that person also. This may be a situation where it is especially helpful to have a trial run and stay for a week in a guest suite.

Peter S. Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC
Counsellor-Coach
Diamond Geriatrics
Elderpost.com
www.Counsellor-Coach.ca
www.DiamondGeriatrics.com
www.Elderpost.com 2
88 West 8th Ave. Vancouver, BC V5Y 1S6
604-874-7764
778-885-5695 Cell

I'm a new senior. I have no "living" family left and I have balance problems so I fall down a lot! I LIKE living alone but I'm very proud. Am I doomed to spend my last years in a stranger's room??

Not at all! But what you should do is get yourself a monitoring system such as Lifeline that also has an automatic fall alert so that a call will be sent to a central call centre who will make sure you are OK and if not, then will call your emergency contact people.

At the same time, please make sure your house is as safe as possible for someone who falls. Modify sharp edges where possible and keep things off the floor and out of the way of where you might hit your head. If you want to go further you can purchase hip protectors to wear. Also consider equipment that might help you to maintain your balance such as something to pick things up or reach for so that you do not fall. Make sure your furniture is safe to get up from or down onto.

Regards,

Peter S. Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC
Counsellor-Coach
Diamond Geriatrics
Elderpost.com
www.Counsellor-Coach.ca
www.DiamondGeriatrics.com
www.Elderpost.com 2
88 West 8th Ave. Vancouver, BC V5Y 1S6
604-874-7764
778-885-5695 Cell
 

The rules are different in different provinces. For example, in Ontario some home care services are covered by the government. Your can read more about it here.

SeniorsZen.com Support

Most provinces have residency requirements, so you would have to wait a certain period. Depending on the province and the services it can be from three months to a year. They may allow you to apply for an exception.

Peter S. Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC
Diamond Geriatrics
www.DiamondGeriatrics.com
 

As a private operation, the cost of participating is almost doubled the goverment funded programs. What are ways to alleviate that cost burden on Seniors? The government funded places are limited and wait time to be part of day program is too long.

MY guess is that there is not, but I do not know.   The best thing to do is to call the Seniors Services providers in your area.

Peter S. Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC
Diamond Geriatrics
www.DiamondGeriatrics.com

Due to changes in income for our parents - and no longer using these services, it would only be fair and reasonable to renegotiate the fees for services never uesed. What is one's legal position in this? Yes, a contract was signed - but with

Hi,

I don't know what province you are in, so it is hard to say.  and I am not sure which optional amenities you are talking about.  My guess is that when your parents moved in, they signed some sort of contract  outlining fees and their application to  each unit and resident. You could talk to  the provincial ombudsperson or you could see if the residence is a member of any professional  organization and contact the organization.  It sounds like you have talked to the administrator of the building.  If it is owned by a larger company, you could talk to  a regional or national person from the company.  Last of course, you can consult a lawyer, which I am not.  In some provinces  a residence may fall under  strata laws or even landlord tenant.

Regards,

Peter Silin

Would you or someone with your organization be available to speak to the Canadian Bar Association, Calgary Section on Elder Law, for about 40 minutes inclusive of questions, about Seniors housing in Alberta and particularly about legal issues, legislation etc.

Hi,

I would look at the following website:   

http://www.seniors.alberta.ca/about_ministry/legislation

In that, at the bottom there is one link which may be what you want:

http://www.qp.alberta.ca/1266.cfm?page=1985_258.cfm&leg_...

I would also call your local Health Authority and ask to speak to a licensing department, and see what they can tell you.  

From your question, it sounds like you may have some concerns about care. If you have some complaints, you might also want to contact the Ombudsperson in Alberta:

http://www.ombudsman.ab.ca/

Kind regards,

Peter Silin

Dear Sir,
I am Amin from Nepal.I got Permanent Residence along with my wife Rachana Adhikari Khadka and i would to let you know that we are very soon moving for Vancouver, Canada.My wife is Registered Staff Nurse in my home country Nepal and she has worked here for 4 years in hospital and tutor for caregiver course for 1 year.She has a volunteer experienced in different health related NGO as well.As soon as we arrived vancouver she wants to work as a caregiver.She is young age of 24 yrs, energetic and able to work at any time.I have found your service facility through google website.So, could you please provide to get the good way to find job facility as a caregiver as soon as we contact you after we arrived at vancouver?
If you want her CV then i can send it you.
Hope for your valuable response and suggestion.
With Best Regards,
Amin Khadka

Hi Amin,

Please refer to this section on our website for job inquiries: http://www.seniorszen.com/senior-care-jobs

Regards,
SeniorsZen Support

Well, let me start off by saying that I am  a Geriatric Care Manager, so would be  considered a transition consultant.

It depends what the consultants say they will do,  and whether you can or want to do the work yourself.  Often you can get most of the information that you want, or at least begin to, from the health authority in the area where the person needing help lives.  If they are knowledgeable, they can save you time, and explain how the whole system works. They can help you ask the questions you might need to ask. 

Look at someone's qualifications and background to see if they  would really have an understanding of what the issues involved in transitions are.  Are they professionally qualified and experienced in eldercare?  what kind of experience, for how long, what is their education and training. Transitions are far more than just helping someone choose  a senior's housing.  Will the consultant  help you understand all of those issues--help you broaden your knowledge, help you find resources.

Also, how are they paid, are they getting a fee from the places to which they refer?  I am often offered a fee, and turn it down, or if it is seniors housing, ask them to apply it to a client's rent, so the benefit does not come to me, it comes directly from the client. My feeling is that if someone is getting paid by the housing, then it is hard to be objective.

I charge a direct fee by  the hour. As a Registered Social Worker, my fee is in line with what others with a masters degree charge (actually a bit less).  Sometimes people can write it off through their extended health or even use my services via their Employee Assistance Programme at work if they have one. Look at my website, www.diamondgeriatrics.com for information on transitions and housing and resources.

Regards,

Peter Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC

I am having doubts on the destined living quarters they have determined, she has vastly improved in 3 weeks after collapsing and having memory loss and confusion. Still shows some confusion with numbers but i believe she can function with a live-in or daily care giver. How do i confirm this or make sure i am making the right decision before taking her from her home?

ANSWER: No one can make your mother move to assisted living unless they have the legal authority to do so.  She can make that decision, or her next of kin can make it if she is unable.  You may have to go through the provincial legal channels to get the authority, which might include  going to court.  You could consult an elder law attorney  for more information on this.

I would wonder how they made this decision and diagnosis and what they think after her current improvement. It is possible that she has Alzheimer's as well as another condition which caused the recent decline  and that has resolved so she is doing better.

You can have an occupational therapist and physiotherapist do an assessment of her ADL--Activities of Daily Living, and of her mobility and risks for falls and other problems.    Discuss with them what help your mother would need to live at home.  Most people with the right amount of help are able to  do so, but it live in help can be expensive.    Look at some of the resources on my website, at www.diamondgeriatrics.com for information on caregiving and resources.  You can also contact your local Alzheimer's Society and ask them about  caregiving issues and meeting the challenges of caregiving.  My recent newsletters, including the one to come out tomorrow talk about "The Dementia Road" and what caregivers need to be aware of.

I am available for phone consultations also. My fee is $110.00 per hour.

Kind regards,

Peter

Peter S. Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC
Diamond Geriatrics
Elderpost.com
www.DiamondGeriatrics.com
www.Elderpost.com
288 West 8th Ave.
Vancouver, BC V5Y 1S6
604-874-7764
778-885-5695 Cell

The current programme serves the needs of  the person who needs care very well, however it does not serve the caregivers.  It separates them from their families for long periods of time.  If the person to whom they are providing care dies or goes into care, they can be left without the ability to work legally, as they are on contract for that person only.  The caregivers provide long hours usually above and beyond what they are contracted to do.  I think that there needs to be some kind of government  agency that they can turn to and who monitors their working conditions and how the contract is going.  To know their rights is one thing--to be able to ask that they be honoured is  different, and more difficult.
Best wishes,
Peter Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC

In a word, no, or at least no, if you are in BC.   As a matter of fact, if it is a private facility, they may not pay any of the costs. However, some private facilities have publicly funded beds, to which someone can transfer when one becomes available.  You could ask the facility if they have them.   Check to see what kind of tax breaks you will  have when it comes tax time, as care homes are deductible expenses if  you have filled out the necessary papers.  If you father is a Veteran, there may be some funding available through the Veterans Department.

Regards,

Peter Silin

Different health authorities and provinces have different structures for complaining.  I would start with  the people on the ward such as the Nursing Leader or the Social Worker.  See if there is a specially designated person/office to handle patient care complaints.  Every hospital will be licensed and you can call the licensing people who are responsible for the  hospital. Most provinces also have an Ombudsman who can step in and do an investigation, although it can take a while, depending on their backlog and urgency. You can find them by googling "ombudsman" and your province.  Be clear  and as detailed as you can about the problems, citing examples.  Also be clear about what you expect in terms of care. Understand that there are limits on the care provided these  days--much less physiotherapy, counselling, and other associated health disciplines than there used to be.  If there are specific areas of care you want, perhaps you can hire someone to supplement what it provided. In my area, one of the things I do as act as and  advocate, depending on where you are, there may be people in private practice who can provide the same function.
Best wishes,
Peter Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC

Yes, Peter is an expert on senior care/senior housing in Canada, so feel free to ask a specific question.

The term senior care, similar to seniors housing, covers a broad range. The short answer is  that in the publicly funded system, there are subsidies, but they are generally based on your income.  If you are looking for assisted living, or nursing home care,  the cost will always be below your income, because the costs are determined by income. If you are looking for home support (someone to come to your home  to help out)  this is also based on income. However, if your income is at a certain level, there is often no difference between what you would pay through the publicly funded programmes and  by buying service privately. The advantage of the latter is that there is more flexibility in the tasks the home support worker can do and you are the direct determiner of times and tasks.  Call your local health authority to find have an assessment.   There is also subsidized  supportive housing and low rent  independent housing through the public system, however it is limited. To  find out more about this, go to B.C. Housing, www.bchousing.org. There is a specific page on supportive housing for seniors: at  http://www.bchousing.org/Options/Supportive_Housing/SSH

Peter Silin, MSW, RSW, CCC