Health, Seniors and Active Living
Advancing Continuing Care – A Blueprint to Support System Change
As the baby boom generation continues to
age into its retirement years, our province
must prepare for the challenges this demographic shift will bring.
In 2010, about 13.6 per cent of Manitobans were aged 65 or older. This percentage is expected to double in the next 25 years. Serving a larger proportion of older Manitobans means that health care authorities must plan ahead to address:
- more chronic disease
- higher health care costs
- greater competition for health care workers
- maintenance of service quality and access to health care services
- increasing need for new, expensive
technologies and treatments
Promoting Independent Living
Most people with chronic illnesses or
disabilities want to continue to live in their
own homes, as independently as possible, for
as long as possible. Since 2006, Manitoba's
Aging in Place Long Term Care Strategy has
helped seniors and others do this by providing
health care in their homes or in community
based, home-like settings.
As our population grows older, we must build on that success by reviewing the strategy to ensure it continues to meet the needs of Manitobans, now and in the foreseeable future.
In February 2011, the province introduced Achieving Healthy Aging, a renewed, long term care plan to meet growing demands for services for seniors. It provides Manitobans with more choice, more independence and a better quality of life.
Advancing Continuing Care – A Blueprint to Support System Change supports the renewed long term plan. It incorporates strategies for aging in place at home, long term care and the range of community supports along the continuum. The Blueprint proposes innovative solutions that promote seniors' health by:
- helping people stay at home by investing in community supports and focusing on wellness, capacity building and restoration when delivering home care
- improving access to home care
- strengthening co-operation among health care partners
- expanding options for community based housing as alternatives to personal care homes (PCH)
- ensuring there are enough long term care beds to meet the needs of Manitobans
- developing new, innovative ways of delivering services to improve care for PCH residents
- making better use of technology to help improve the quality and co-ordination of care, make informed decisions and develop policy
Planning for the Future
The Blueprint was developed by Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living in collaboration with key stakeholders, such as provincial committees, government departments, regional health authorities, private agencies, community groups and health care providers.
The Blueprint is a five year plan for the province. It focuses on matching the needs of individuals and their caregivers with local supports, which will help people avoid unnecessary loss of independence and quality of life through premature admission to PCHs or hospitals. It will also build and support a more sustainable health care system. Change is critical to deliver care and services that improve the lives of Manitoba seniors and others with chronic illnesses and disabilities.