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Putting seniors first: Ending 80 km rule, improving care standards and investing in long-term care

EDMONTON, AB (October 17, 2014): A Wildrose government would take immediate action to address the  PCs shameful record on seniors by increasing year-over-year homecare funding, restoring funding  for long-term care facilities caring for higher-needs seniors, ensuring all care facilities meet meal quality, bathing and care standards and ending the "divorce by nursing home" 80-kilometre rule.

 “Years of broken promises and more of the same failed leadership has resulted in seniors receiving less compassionate and lower quality care throughout the health care system,” Wildrose Human Services and Seniors Critic Kerry Towle said. “It’s time to send the PCs a message that our seniors deserve better. The Wildrose is committed to putting the concerns of seniors first, ending the cruel divorce by nursing home policy and improving care standards at seniors’ facilities across the province.”

A Wildrose government would put the needs of Alberta seniors first by:

  • Restoring all funding cut by the PCs and add a backdated inflationary increase for long term care facilities that care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s and other higher needs conditions;
  • Investing $50 million to re-open closed transition and long-term care beds;
  • Investing $50 million to expand homecare funding and then annually increasing homecare funding to keep up with enrolment;
  • Ensuring all seniors' care facilities are meeting meal quality and bathing standards; and
  • Ending the "Divorce by Nursing Home" 80-kilometre rule so married couples can continue to live together in dignity.

Wildrose Edmonton-Whitemud candidate Tim Grover said the PC government's refusal to take meaningful action to support seniors is inexcusable.

“There is no excuse in a province as affluent as Alberta for the government not to be supporting our seniors in a way that allows them live in dignity in their own homes and communities while freeing up hundreds of badly-needed acute care beds.  We need to take action,” Grover said. “The Wildrose has a real plan to immediately help seniors in our province and to improve their quality of life."