Posted May 16, 2018 07:10:51 The costs of care at nursing homes, assisted living and assisted-living homes, and other long-term care facilities are soaring.
With new government measures to ease the financial burden of care, a new study says the average annual cost of care is rising faster than the overall economy.
The study by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation of Canada found that while overall care costs are rising, nursing home and assisted living costs are increasing by an average of 11.3 per cent per year.
Its estimates show that a single person can spend $2,000 a year in long-stay care alone, which is more than twice the average for other health care.
Nursing home costs also are up.
As of July 1, the average nursing home in Canada was spending $3,600 per month, up about 6.5 per cent from two years ago.
That’s about a third more than in the same period last year, but the average home in Ontario has been spending $2.70 per month.
At the same time, there are more people than ever staying in nursing homes.
According to Statistics Canada, there were 7,622,000 people in nursing facilities in Canada last year.
There are now more than 4.3 million.
“This is really concerning,” said Sarah Smith, the executive director of the Canadian Association of Health Care Organizations, which commissioned the study.
It’s not just nursing homes and assisted Living homes that are spending more money on care.
The average cost of a hospital bed has also been rising.
In 2015-16, the annual hospital bed cost in Canada stood at $1,300.
That’s about three times what it cost in 2015-2016, when the average cost was $1.90 per bed.
And with the government easing its nursing home rules, the cost of hospital beds has jumped as well.
More than 60 per cent of Canadians have hospital beds, up from 51 per cent in the early 1990s, according to the Canadian Institute of Health Information.
There’s also a rise in nursing home residents.
According to Statistics New Brunswick, the number of nursing home beds in the province rose from 13,000 in 1995 to 22,000 last year — an increase of 14 per cent.
Experts say the growing costs are having an effect on the health of the population.
While the number and size of nursing homes are increasing, so are the costs.
Researchers from the Institute of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Ottawa and the Centre for Health Policy and Management in Toronto found that the cost per person to care for a person in a nursing home increased by nearly four per cent between 2015 and 2016.
They also found that for people in assisted living, the amount spent per year has increased by 14 per per cent over the same periods.
A study by McMaster University found that overall nursing home costs in Canada have increased by 20 per cent since 2006.
Those costs were also rising faster in Ontario than they were in other provinces.
Ontario spent more per person on its nursing homes in 2015 than any other province, up more than 30 per cent compared with 2014.
Newfoundland and Labrador spent more than $30,000 per person in nursing care in 2015, compared with just $16,000 the year before.
But even with the recent increase in the costs of caring for people with dementia, the province still had the highest cost of all.
This is more evidence that people with disabilities are having a hard time accessing long-lasting care, said Peter Clark, a senior research scientist at the Centre on Aging and Disability Policy at McMaster University.
Even with the help of nursing-home restrictions, the costs to Canadians are rising faster.
Cases have gone up by about 3.5 times over the past five years.
If you think about it, the more people who have dementia, it’s not really the case that they can get better care,” Clark said.
Clark said people with mental health disabilities should have the same access to long- term care as anyone else.
Many of the people who are at risk of needing long- duration care are also older people who may not have the financial means to pay for it.
For example, if you’re in your 60s and you’re going to a nursing facility, you need to have your family support, Clark said, adding that the longer people stay in a facility, the higher the costs will be.
Last year, Statistics Canada released data showing that seniors were spending more on health care and other costs than anyone else, including seniors with disabilities.
About 1.1 million seniors were in long term care in the first quarter of 2019.
By comparison, only 537,000 seniors were living in nursing residences, and the number in assisted-