Wildrose Party leader Brian Jean speaks with senior Helga Kure (left) and her daughters Janie Loney (seated) and Michele Johannson (standing) during his visit to Maple Cottage in Red Deer on Friday afternoon. (Photo by Jeff Stokoe/Advocate staff)

Wildrose leader calls out government on health care

Brian Jean in Red Deer

Wildrose says home care funding is being denied to seniors living in private long-term care facilities and wants the province to make sure all seniors get proper care regardless of where they live.

“What we have to do is make the government aware what’s going on here and that the private sector can be a good partner with the public sector to provide what we need to do and that is better quality of life for seniors,” said Wildrose leader Brian Jean on Friday in Red Deer while visiting seniors at Maple Cottage that operates in a residential house in Deer Park.

Maple Cottage is part of the private long-term care company Community Care Cottages.

He said allowing seniors to choose where they want to live instead of the government assigning them to a particular facility will also address the frequency in which couples are separated or “divorced by nursing home” because of inadequate beds or facilities.

“The government is not very good at running facilities such as this and they don’t offer any alternatives which means it costs more money and provides less services.”

Jean also called on the province to expand Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre which has been identified as a priority by local doctors.

He said numbers he’s seen show how inadequate health care funding has been for Central Alberta compared to other places. At the very least the region should receive fair funding and a facility that’s at least equal to communities the size of Red Deer.

“I think the best thing to do is to make sure that the public continues to speak loudly, that a new facility is required, and make sure the local authority as well as AHS in Edmonton get to the business of creating the facility that’s necessary to be able to service the people here.”

szielinski@bprda.wpengine.com

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