June 7 2013

Changes to Homecare: Guest blog from the Canadian Paraplegic Association (Alberta)

The Canadian Paraplegic Association (Alberta) acknowledges there has been no formal announcement by the Alberta Provincial Government or Alberta Health Services regarding changes to homecare. The association has heard from various sources however, that extensive changes and potential cuts to homecare are imminent. Alberta Health Services may be handing homecare service delivery over to a select few larger homecare contractors sometime in July. The Self Managed Care option within homecare may be frozen and the funding amounts reduced. According to the Alberta Health Services Annual Report for 2011/12, there were 104,704 unique homecare clients in Alberta, a number that is expected to increase this year.

Changes may include:

  • Reducing homecare providers: Elimination of two thirds of organizations providing personal homecare effective some time during the month of July;
  • Reducing the number of contractors from the current 32 down to 10;
  • There is also speculation regarding reduction in duties performed by caregivers, such as light housekeeping.

How could this impact you?

  • Reduction in direct involvement in your own care;
  • Reduction in providers may lead to reduction in choice, such as;
    • No alternative in terms of who is providing your care. No options to change care provider if there are unresolved issues.
    • Lack of choice in prioritizing your homecare needs.
  • After hours, onsite care may be unavailable. For example,
    • availability of a caregiver to provide assistance during the night;
    • availability of a caregiver during non-scheduled times (such as assistance with seating/re-positioning, bathroom needs, etc.)
  • Possible reduction in quality of care;
  • Potential for reduced flexibility in service.

These impacts could lead to:

  • Loss of independence;
  • Declining physical health;
  • Declining mental health;
  • Possible loss of employment, education and volunteer opportunities;
  • Decreased potential for community involvement;
  • Increased emotional and physical hardship for you, your family and those around you.

What can you do?

  • Get in touch with your local MLA.
    • Ask for information regarding the reasons for the proposed changes to homecare and what evidence was used to support these decisions.
  • Friends of Medicare are planning a town hall meeting on June 23rd , 6:30 p.m., Edmonton Ironworkers Union, Local 720, 10512 – 122 Street in Edmonton.
  • Please let us know how you feel these changes may affect you now and in the coming months [email protected]

Some recent coverage has included:

Edmonton CTV News

Edmonton Journal

CBC News

www.camtaittalk.blogspot.ca 
Contact the following:

Fred Horne (Minister of Health)

780-427-3665 [email protected]
Marcia Nelson (Deputy Minister of Health)

780-422-0747 [email protected]
George VanderBurg (Associate Minister of Seniors)

780-415-9550 [email protected]
Dave Rodney (Associate Minister of Wellness)

780-415-0482 [email protected]

  #ourhomecare  

  Connect with us at:

  www.cpa-ab.org

Canadian Paraplegic Association (Alberta)

#305, 11010 – 101 Street

Edmonton, Alberta T5H 4B9
Phone: 780-424-6312, Fax: 780-424-6313
1-888-654-5444