Michael says government not doing enough on long-term care waitlists

James
James McLeod
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New Democrat Leader Lorraine Michael said the government should have listened to her years ago when she pressed for more long-term care spaces in the province.

NDP Leader Lorraine Michael. — Telegram file photo

During question period in the House of Assembly Monday, Michael asked Health Minister Paul Davis how many people are currently on the wait list for long-term care.

Davis said the number changes from day to day, so he couldn't give a specific answer.

“I pointed out to this government years ago that our aging demographic would result in an increased demand for personal care home and long-term care beds,” Michael told Davis.

“So I ask the minister: why didn’t the government make adequate plans when they had the choice? Because I can assure him they do not have enough beds for the wait list.”

Michael said that detailed plans with lots of specific details are necessary to tackle this sort of a problem.

“We have an aging population in Newfoundland and Labrador and we recognize that. In fact, as a government we are taking great steps,” Davis said.

“We are building, as I mentioned, a new significant piece of infrastructure in the east part of St. John’s, a new long-term care facility; it will have 461 beds. We are building a new one in Carbonear with 228 beds. We are adding capacity to Labrador City.”

But Michael said that wasn't specific enough.

“So the minister is acknowledging that we have a looming crisis, really,” Michael said.

“The need is getting greater. I would like to see the plan, Mr. Speaker, with details of how they are going to make sure the wait lists end.”

When Davis told her that the government has a strategy for long term care, Michael said that wasn't good enough.

“I have read that document and it does not have the details I am asking for.”

jmcleod@thetelegram.com

Twitter: TelegramJames

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador, Carbonear

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  • Barbara White
    May 14, 2014 - 00:21

    This is just frustrating especially those who have coverage because they still need to wait before they can get admitted to a nursing home or assisted living facility. The beds are not enough for older adults who will need long-term care, which is surprising because the government should have been prepared for this. Everyone knows that 70% of people who are 65 years old and above will require long-term care and the government should have anticipated that more people will grow older and therefore will need this type of care. If beds are not available, then perhaps concerned individuals should resort to home care instead. The are home care agencies today that provide high quality care, which is a good option for people who require extensive care. If you want to explore your other options and skip getting waitlisted, you can read more about long term care here: www.ltcoptions.com.

  • Laughable
    May 13, 2014 - 11:24

    The information Lorraine looking for is, more spending. Now Lorraine give us your solution to the problem, and how money are you talking about. Yes the liberal and the NDP like to spend,