Expert Advisory Panel to Recommend Improvements in Long-term Care

Minister of Health and Wellness Randy Delorey has appointed an expert advisory panel to look at ways to improve the quality of long-term care in Nova Scotia.

“We want to make sure people living in our long-term care homes are getting the best care possible,” said Mr. Delorey. “Recent concerns have left us looking at what we can be doing differently and these experts will help guide us.”

The three-member panel includes:
— Janice Keefe, chair – director of Mount Saint Vincent University’s Nova Scotia Centre on Aging
— Dr. Greg Archibald – family doctor, wound care expert and head of Dalhousie University’s Department of Family Medicine
— Cheryl Smith – nurse practitioner, educator focusing on polypharmacy and dementia care

Their work will include:
— identifying evidence-based solutions to improve quality of care in long-term care facilities
— recommending appropriate staffing levels, staff complement and skill mix for long-term care facilities
— advising on the recruitment and retention of long-term care staff

In reviewing quality of care, there will be a focus on matters such as proper wound care, patient and worker safety, and appropriate care and protection of vulnerable persons.

The panel has been asked to report back with recommendations by November 30.

There are about 6,900 nursing home beds and 900 residential care facility beds in Nova Scotia that serve about 11,000 people each year.