Hundreds of new spaces will be created for seniors and vulnerable people under an innovative plan to expand continuing care.
Alberta Health Services (AHS) is seeking proposals from new and existing continuing care operators to add publicly funded spaces without additional capital funding. This initiative builds on the Affordable Supportive Living Initiative (ASLI) and targets communities across the province with the most pressing need for new spaces.
“Alberta seniors are cherished members of our communities. To meet their needs, we’re developing new continuing care spaces in priority communities across Alberta and continuing our government’s platform commitment to reinstate the Alberta Supportive Living Initiative. Through this work, hundreds of Alberta seniors will have better access to high-quality continuing care close to family and friends – quickly and cost-effectively.” Jason Kenney, Premier
Too often, seniors are forced to access the care they need outside of their home communities.
“Seniors and vulnerable Albertans deserve high-quality continuing care close to home; and too many Albertans are waiting in hospital for continuing care spaces. This initiative is part of our larger commitment to add continuing care spaces so seniors and vulnerable people can get the care they need in the communities they love.” Tyler Shandro, Minister of Health
Interested operators in priority communities are invited to submit proposals through an expression of interest (EOI) process if they have capacity to operate new continuing care spaces, under contract with AHS.
“Every Albertan wants to age in grace and dignity, close to family and friends. Targeting priority communities means that more Albertans will have quicker access to continuing care closer to home. This is a smart and sensible approach that will benefit Alberta seniors in communities across the province.” Jennifer McCue, board chair, Alberta Continuing Care Association
“The Christian Health Association of Alberta has a long history of not-for-profit continuing care delivery across the province. Many of our member organizations have operated in under-served communities for 100 to 150 years. We truly value the opportunity to continue serving vulnerable Albertans with a focus on communities with the highest need for additional spaces and services.” John Kopeck, board vice-chair, Christian Health Association of Alberta
This is the first step in a larger plan to expand continuing care and ensure communities most in need get support to open new spaces. Budget 2020 includes $164 million over three years to increase the number of continuing care spaces available across the province through the current EOI and further initiatives.
A detailed analysis by AHS has identified 31 Alberta communities most in need of new continuing care spaces based on current and projected demand and supply, age of the population, and health-care utilization.
Communities targeted for the EOI process:
City of Calgary, including Chestermere
Airdrie, including Crossfield
Spruce Grove / Stony Plain
City of Edmonton
City of Grande Prairie
High Level / Fort Vermilion
Lethbridge including Raymond / Magrath
Brooks / Bassano
Okotoks-Priddis including Black Diamond
Three Hills / Trochu / Linden
Strathcona County including Sherwood Park
Westlock / Redwater
As of March, there are 27,518 continuing care spaces in Alberta.
The average wait for a move into a continuing care facility was 54 days in 2019-20.
As of March 31, AHS operates 103 continuing care facilities in Alberta. There are also 126 privately operated facilities and 124 non-profit facilities offering continuing care services.
Currently, about 400 Albertans are waiting in acute care for continuing care spaces to become available.
Provincial Press Release September 1, 2020 1:52 pm