Care for the Expensive Elderly Asks for a Different Approach

Parliamentary budget officials report that proper expansion and upgrades of elderly care in Canada will increase public costs by $ 13.7 billion annually.It‘NS High cost with some new calls to emphasize home care over institutionalized models.

A recent analysis by Eve Giroud was prompted by House Motion 77, introduced by Green Party lawmaker Paul Manly. This suggested some changes to elderly care that would be quite expensive. The PBO Report responds to proposed changes to facility-based care, including the addition of 52,000 new long-term care beds, a 15% increase in staff wages and allowances, and a daily increase from 2.7 hours to 4 hours for direct care. We estimate a price tag of $ 8.5 billion. .. An additional $ 5.2 billion for home care will boost the share of total public spending on elderly care to 35 percent.

With a new annual spending of $ 13.7 billion, public spending on elderly care will jump from $ 30.1 billion to $ 43.8 billion annually based on 2019.– –20 state and territory government spending, including $ 20 billion for facility-based care and $ 10.1 billion for home care. Giroux said an increase in annual spending of 4.1 percent is needed to keep up with Canada’s increasingly aging population.

Dr. Samil Singha, director of health policy research at the National Institute on Aging (NIA) at Ryerson University, said Canada has lower long-term spending on older people than other Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries. increase. Long-term care funding for cheaper options for home care.

“We spend about 87 cents per dollar to store seniors in warehouses, rather than actually caring for them in long-term care facilities,” Shinha said in an interview. Told. “The average OECD country spends about two-thirds institutionalizing older people.”

Home care vs care home

Shinha chairs the Federal Committee on the Establishment of Long-term Care Standards and expects the first draft of the report to be published in January 2022. However, he preferred the Danish approach of prioritizing home care over long-term care facilities and took Canada’s deputy minister to Denmark. See for yourself in 2017.

“The Danes were just shocked when they heard about our care facility with all these people. They said,” Why do you keep these people hostage? Home? Would you like to send it to?… Providing care at the hospital is much more expensive than the person’s home. They have a home, have a bed, and are there nurses? Why don’t you do that because you need to send a personal support worker? Why waste so much money? “He recalled.

Shinha believes that some of the twisted incentives to prefer long-term care are political.

“It’s a lot more expensive, but there’s this great obsession with the construction of nursing beds and new facilities because it’s a great ribbon-cutting opportunity for politicians. [option], “He said,” Home care is almost invisible. “

Now, more than ever, care homes seem to be the last place Canadians want to live. According to a NIA / Telus survey conducted by Leger in 2020, nearly 100% of Canadians over the age of 65 want to live independently at home for as long as possible. The majority said the pandemic changed their views on whether to bring themselves or their loved ones into long-term care facilities.

According to Shinha, care homes have chronic staffing issues. This is because nurses are paid less to work there than in hospitals. He has 430,000 Canadians with unmet home care needs, more than 50,000 on the long-term care home waiting list, and 15% of hospital beds waiting to enter the house. It is estimated that it is occupied by the elderly.

By 2030, one in four Canadians will be elderly, and by 2050, long-term care spending could exceed $ 70 billion, he says.

“As the fertility rate declines, fewer family caregivers are on hand. [They] We provide 90 percent of people’s home care. Who provides that care? “

According to a survey, more than 3 million unpaid caregivers now provide care to older parents in Canada.

Sacred duty to your elders

Paul Adams, a former University of Hawaii sociologist, said families and religious institutions took care of older people in the 19th century. Poorhouses had some public funding, but they required people to work and often included agriculture as a way to feed their own residents, the elderly, and the disabled.

“The religiously motivated philanthropic poorhouse … took care of the old man who could or did not do so, and they did. [house] In an interview, Adams said, “A single man who did not support himself by giving birth or saving.”

“Older women — maybe someone took them because people felt sorry for them, perhaps more convenient. It was as if the pastor took an old lady to help in the house. I may go. “

Adams said that social security and senior citizens’ pensions are “part of the response to urbanization, liquidity and the decline of close families, but … the basic historical idea: your child is your social security. It will replace that. ” They are your life insurance. And in India and other countries that do not have such a well-developed financial and social security system, we see that. “

He said that while some policy initiatives and tax incentives can encourage marriage and families, a full recovery requires social change.

“This is part of the whole problem of rebuilding a strong family consciousness that was largely destroyed by the sexual revolution of the 1960s, and basically the needs of children and the elderly are the needs of young adults and adults. It was sacrificed, and it actually became much more individualistic, “Adams said.

“You need not only need a child, but also a very strong sense of filial piety, a sense of divine duty to your elders, otherwise it will not work.”

Lee Harding

Lee Harding is a Saskatchewan-based journalist and think tank researcher and contributor to The Epoch Times.