Seniors discuss health concerns

  • Mar. 28, 2011 10:00 a.m.

Submitted by Jean Foster-Seniors from Port Clements and Tlell met with Patrick Moores, site manager of the Northern Haida Gwaii Hospital and Health Centre, and Angela Szabo, manager of home services, on March 23.The first topic of discussion was assisted living. At the moment there is one opening at the Martin Manor in Queen Charlotte and one at the Nick Grosse Home in Massett. Ms Szabo explained how these units are operated and the 15-unit operation in Prince Rupert. There has been a struggle to keep all of these operations filled. The housing is built in partnership with Northern Health and BC Housing.The Martin Manor in Queen Charlotte is operated by a non-profit society, and the Nick Grosse Home is operated and funded by Northern Health and BC Housing, as a non-profit group could not be found to take over the operation. The criteria for application to either of these homes is a low to medium income or a disability that would require support services. The costs for assisted living are calculated at 70 percent of income after tax.Acute care is available in the hospitals. Pallative care services are provided with home care nursing and after surgery home care is available at the request of a doctor for a period of two weeks at no cost.Lifeline Services are available all over the islands, and cost approximately $12.50 a month in Port Clements. This service provides the special telephone, necklace and bracelet required. One of the features is a medication reminder, where a call is placed to your home to say “pill time”.A good discussion on how to achieve assisted living in Port Clements raised lots of questions, and with the government benchmark at one unit for every 1,000 people, a workable model has not been achieved at this time.Other discussions included: Heritage House, a meals on wheels pilot project, special equipment for homes, and scooters.Several people brought questions regarding how the Port Clements doctors’ clinic is operated and comments made about how it does not work well for the residents who are unable to travel to Masset.Mr. Moores explained that the A-B-C system was set up by the doctors because they only want to be responsible for the people assigned to them. They do not want to be liable for patients they are not familiar with. This system does not allow walk-ins on clinic day, because patient charts are not available.Northern Health is in the process of a study called “bed modelling”, which looks at the health of a community and the demographics, then projects the services required for the next 15 years. The current bed modelling is in place till 2015 and then will be revamped with the new information.If you would like to hear more about any of these topics or have questions, the Northern Health team of Angela Szabo, Conny Young, Katherine Irtwhistle and others will be attending the monthly luncheon on April 8.

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