01 February 2018
FLORENCEVILLE-BRISTOL (GNB) – More than 1,000 new nursing home beds and memory care beds will be created over the next five years, Premier Brian Gallant announced today.
“With our multi-year aging strategy, we will work together to provide our seniors the best quality of life possible,” said Gallant. “Investing in new nursing homes and memory care beds will create jobs and help improve senior care.”
The 2018-2023 Nursing Home Plan, which will be carried out in three phases, involves building ten 60-bed nursing homes around the province.
An additional 407 beds for people living with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia will be provided in special care homes. As well, 19 nursing home beds will be added to existing homes.
Tuesday’s budget contained a number of investments and strategies to benefit seniors and their caregivers, such as:
- $12 million to increase wages for special care workers and home support workers.
- $1.25 million for a pilot project to help free up acute-care beds.
- $2.1 million for a wage supplement program focused on seniors, to encourage companies to hire seniors.
- $800,000 to begin implementing the New Brunswick Aging Strategy.
- $11.3 million for a program to support informal caregivers.
- $2.1 million in additional funding for specialized beds for people with advanced dementia.
“Your government continues to support programs that will enable seniors to live independently at home for as long as possible,” said Seniors and Long-Term Care Minister Lisa Harris. “But it is also important to ensure sufficient nursing home beds are available when they are needed. New Brunswick is in a unique position due to our aging population. It is crucial that we make strategic investments now that support our seniors, to ensure the best quality of life for everyone who calls our province home.”
These initiatives are in addition to other programs for seniors, such as the Home First strategy, the Seniors Health, Well-Being and Home Safety Review, wellness clinics and the Age-Friendly Communities Recognition Program, as well as other investments in senior care, such as affordable housing and home care.
Fostering healthy aging and support for seniors is one of the seven priority areas outlined in the New Brunswick Family Plan framework, which also focuses government action on: improving access to primary and acute care; promoting wellness; supporting people with addictions and mental health challenges; advancing women’s equality; reducing poverty and providing support for people living with a disability.