Canadian Public Health Care System

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As the number of older Canadians increases, there will be a major financial and labour strain on the Canadian public health care system which will require increased government funding and social programs geared towards elder care. There are a number of areas of care that elderly citizens require that are not fully covered by the public health care system. As the population ages their naturally declining health increases their need for such things as prescription drugs, home care, long-term care and end-of-life care. With such a large number of the population expected to require these services over the coming decades, new programs will need to be developed and funded to meet these needs. The strain on the labour force will be seen in two ways.…show more content…
In Canada in 2012, 10% of those 65 to 74 years, 21% of those aged 75 to 84 and 45% of those 85 years and older received care in their home. Recent research has found that 25% of employed Canadians are caring for an elderly dependant. Of these, three quarters are middle-aged women caring for a parent with chronic health problems. Increased expenses and reduced work hours may create financial strains for these caregivers and their families. Additionally, working Canadians will likely be hit with a significantly higher tax bill in the future to pay for increased health care spending required to support the growing number of Canadian seniors. The majority of seniors would prefer to live at home as long as possible, even if they have a long-term health condition that limits their independence. Home care or aging at home is beneficial to the public health care system because it is generally less costly than hospital or hospice care. To live at home safely and maintain a good level of well-being, however, seniors frequently require help with their daily activities such as personal care, medical care, household maintenance and transportation. With the growing number of seniors in Canada it will be necessary for the government to introduce more social programs to support caregivers and seniors in their homes. Many studies show that seniors who receive social support and professional home care services…show more content…
By 2026, it is estimated that there will be over three million people with disabilities over the age of 65, this is almost double the 1.6 million reported in 2001. Increased disability is often what leads seniors to require long-term care outside of their normal residence. Long-term care facilities, also known as retirement homes charge between $1,700.00-$2,400.00 per month and often have long wait lists to acquire a room. These monthly fees are said to include, a room (often shared with another resident), food, care, laundry, housekeeping and some medical services. The level and quality of care can vary greatly between facilities and the higher the quality usually results in a longer wait list and monthly fees that are on the high end of the cost

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