Seniors’ residences: the model “is unsustainable”, according to a study

Seniors’ residences: the model “is unsustainable”, according to a study
Seniors’ residences: the model “is unsustainable”, according to a study

The current model of private residences for seniors (RPA) in Quebec “is unsustainable,” according to a study published Monday by the interuniversity research center CIRANO.

A team of researchers, led by Mélanie Bourassa Forcier, professor at the University of Sherbrooke, analyzed RPA data across the province and conducted around thirty interviews with managers, employees and residents.

The objective of the project is “to highlight the different issues of RPAs” and to “capture the perception of staff and seniors living in RPAs, stakeholders who are too rarely surveyed,” we can read in the document. over 200 pages.

In an interview with TVA Nouvelles, Mélanie Bourassa Forcier explained that the problems which lead to the closure of many RPAs are multifactorial.

“[Ces fermetures] are linked to over-regulation, to standards that are increasingly difficult to implement, particularly for small RPAs, but also to difficulties in obtaining care and services from CLSCs for residents of RPAs, and therefore at this time “There, it’s up to the RPAs to provide these services.”

The report reveals that closures are more pronounced among small RPAs “which are simply running out of steam,” she added.

“[Elles sont] unable to meet standards while maintaining a level of employees, human resources and financial resources.”

For the authors, it is the standards and regulations that should adapt more to the type of RPA.

Elderly people losing their autonomy

Researchers also indicate that with significant investments in home care and services, older people are staying in their homes longer and going to RPA later.

The latter end up arriving in RPA with a greater loss of autonomy, older and sicker.

“And this is where we need additional services which are not there,” explained Ms. Bourassa Forcier, who believes that these environments are not sufficiently adapted to their needs.

“It is undeniable that the current regulatory model and service offering model are unsustainable,” concluded the authors of the study.

“We are removing residences everywhere, especially in the regions”

For Marc Fortin, CEO of the Regroupement québécois des residences pour seniors, the normative framework around RPAs “is far too cumbersome” and has “become unmanageable”.

“A lot of managers give up. It costs a lot of money to meet standards,” he said in an interview with TVA Nouvelles.

He stated that within the Regroupement, he has witnessed, on average, two closures per week for the last five years.

“What we see are the small RPAs […] they can no longer do it. We are in the process of removing residences everywhere in the territory, especially in the regions.”

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