SAINT-ANTOINE (GNB) – The provincial government is investing $1.8 million over five years in renovations to Foyer Saint-Antoine, a 30-bed nursing home in Saint-Antoine.

“Foyer Saint-Antoine’s dedicated staff and volunteers provide excellent care for residents of this area,” said Health Minister Benoît Bourque. “Investing in the nursing home will help ensure this quality of care continues while improving the home’s infrastructure.”

Bourque spoke on behalf of Seniors and Long-Term Care Minister Lisa Harris.

The home will also be the site of a pilot project that will see the addition of four respite care beds and a community room. The respite care beds will provide temporary relief for family members who are caring for a loved one. The government will invest an estimated $1.3 million in this project.

The renovation funding is part of the 2018-2023 Nursing Home Plan, which was announced on Feb. 1. The plan, which will be carried out in three phases, also involves building ten 60-bed nursing homes around the province.

An additional 407 beds for people living with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia will be provided in special care homes.

The 2018-19 provincial budget contains a number of investments and strategies intended to benefit seniors and their caregivers, such as:

  • $12 million to increase wages for special care workers and home support workers.
  • $1.25 million for a pilot project to help free up acute-care beds.
  • $2.1 million for a wage supplement program focused on seniors, to encourage companies to hire seniors.
  • $800,000 to begin implementing the New Brunswick Aging Strategy.
  • $11.3 million for a program to support informal caregivers.
  • $2.1 million in additional funding for specialized beds for people with advanced dementia.

These initiatives are in addition to other programs for seniors, such as the Home First strategy, the Seniors Health, Well-Being and Home Safety Review, wellness clinics and the Age-Friendly Communities Recognition Program, as well as other investments in senior care, such as affordable housing and home care.

Fostering healthy aging and support for seniors is one of the seven priority areas outlined in the New Brunswick Family Plan framework, which also focuses government action on: improving access to primary and acute care; promoting wellness; supporting people with addictions and mental health challenges; advancing women’s equality; reducing poverty and providing support for people living with a disability.