MONCTON (GNB) – The provincial and federal governments have announced a successful project from round one of the $75-million Healthy Seniors Pilot Project.

The project, called Nursing Homes Without Walls, will explore the extension of support services offered in nursing homes to seniors still living at home.

“We know New Brunswick’s senior population is rising rapidly,” said Social Development Minister Dorothy Shephard. “We need to be certain that supports are in place to care for our seniors in the same way they have spent their lives caring for us. Projects that are approved under the Healthy Seniors Pilot Project will help to create a positive aging experience for New Brunswickers and keep seniors happy, healthy and independent.”

The pilot project was announced last June and will be carried out over three years. It focuses on applied research initiatives to better understand the effects of aging and to improve the quality of life of seniors and their loved ones.

“Seniors are the fastest-growing demographic in Canada and play an integral role in the fabric of our society,” said federal Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor. “We are proud to support this project through our funding for the Healthy Seniors Pilot Project, which will provide valuable insight into how we can best support healthy aging for seniors across Canada.”

The project will be tested in four sites: Westford Nursing Home in Port Elgin; Résidences Inkerman in Inkerman; Manoir Edith B. Pinet in Paquetville; and Résidences Lucien Saindon in Lamèque.

“We believe this pilot project will demonstrate that nursing homes, especially in rural areas, can have an expanded role in supporting seniors who want to stay in their homes in the community,” said Suzanne Dupuis-Blanchard, research chair in population aging and director of the Research Centre on Aging at the Université de Moncton. “It is a new service model that we are excited to implement.”

Funding for the Healthy Seniors Pilot Project was announced as part of the 2018 federal budget, and is available for government and non-governmental groups to initiate projects that will align with, support and further the implementation of the New Brunswick Aging Strategy. More information on the pilot project is available online.