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Towle calls on Horne to scrap home care centralization

INNISFAIL, AB (July 11, 2013): A report on changes to home care by AHS administrator Janet Davidson will be nothing more than a whitewash unless Health  Minister Fred Horne backs down from the callous centralization that is taking away quality of care and choice for patients, Wildrose Seniors Critic Kerry Towle said today.

 Horne recently indicated the government will not back down from the centralization of home care providers, despite evidence the change may negatively affect vulnerable Albertans with unique needs. “If Minister Horne is looking for $18 million in savings, he should start with the bureaucratic overburden in Alberta Health Services instead of attacking the front line services Albertans depend on for their day to day needs,” Towle said. “Reducing access and choice for home care recipients to receive these critical services hurts our most vulnerable and should not be tolerated.” Towle offered praise for numerous health and seniors advocacy groups that have taken a stand to defend the integrity of home care provided to Albertans. “The relationship between patients and their provider is very intimate. These rapid, thoughtless changes are causing instability and uncertainty,” Towle said. “In typical PC government fashion, the decision was made with no regard for potential effects on patient outcomes or quality of care. Albertans deserve better.” Carol Anne, whose mother is currently receiving home care services in Edmonton, expressed disappointment that the centralization of home care services is going forward. “I am very disappointed that Minister Horne, after calling for a review, is refusing to listen to the very real concerns from families like my own,” Anne said. “I hope that it’s not too late for the minister to admit that he’s made a mistake.”