'What's changed?' Long-term care group puzzled by changes to COVID-19 compensation

·2 min read

The executive director of the Community Association of Long Term Care on P.E.I. says members are frustrated by the lack of clarity around compensation from the province for expenses incurred because of COVID-19 public health guidelines.

Health PEI informed long-term care homes that the grants used to subsidize additional staffing, personal protective equipment, and modifications to seniors' homes have come to an end.

The province said it will still help seniors' homes with additional costs, but owners of the private homes will have to demonstrate the need for help rather than being handed a universal grant based on the number of beds in that seniors' home.

Cecil Villard said it's a "peculiar position" given that many of the costs are ongoing staffing requirements to, for example, make sure the facilities are sanitized properly and there is a greeter at the door to take the temperature of visitors and inform them of the protocols.

Costs 'constant'

"These costs are consistently provided every day, every week, so it's not as though we're doing something new," Villard said. "We're continuing to do what we've been doing all along. And the costs for many of these facilities are constant."

Villard said he'll be seeking clarity from the government about what exactly has changed.

"My understanding is that if any of the facilities, community care, long-term care, whatever the case may be, if they're incurring additional costs as a result of having to manage COVID-19, that they will be compensated for those costs," he said.

"And I would expect that they would continue to do what they've been doing all along, and that is providing all of the financial information to demonstrate that, yes, indeed, they are incurring these costs on a regular basis and therefore they should be compensated. So I guess my question is, what's changed?"

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