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How do I access long-term care?

Priority for long-term care is always given to those with the highest need and the greatest risk.

If you are living at home

You can access this service by contacting your local Home Health and Community Care Office where a Case Manager will determine your needs and eligibility.

  1. Contact your local Home Health and Community Care Office at the central intake number

  2. A case manager will determine your needs and eligibility

  3. We aim to locate a care home that you have identified as one of your prefered care homes

  4. Consent is required for admissions to long-term care homes. If an adult is not capable of providing consent, someone acting on their behalf will be asked to consent to a specific care home. For more information please visit the Ministry of Health website or speak with your health care provider.

  5. We will notify you when an interim or preferred care home becomes available

  6. When offered a bed in your preferred care home, you will be expected to move with very short notice – often within 48 hours of a bed becoming available

If you are in the hospital

If you are assessed as needing long-term care following a stay in the hospital and the first appropriate bed is not available, your case manager will assist you to return home with appropriate care and services in place while waiting for a suitable publicly subsidized long-term care bed. If you prefer, you may also move into a private pay setting while awaiting for a suitable publicly subsidized long-term care bed.

How long does it take to get into a long-term care home?

The search for a long-term care bed that best meets your needs starts as soon as the Case Manager completes your assessment. We aim to locate a bed in your preferred care home.

It is important to let the Case Manager know if you experience changes in your health while waiting for a bed. Your case manager is best able to help you plan what to do next if you find staying at home more challenging.

How should I prepare to move?

BC's long-term access policy ensures people with the greatest assessed need have priority for the first appropriate bed in a long-term care home. When you are offered a bed in your preferred care home, you will be expected to move with very short notice – often within 48 hours. Vancouver Coastal Health has the following suggestions to help you transition more smoothly to your new home:

What if I want to change locations?

If you do not get into your preferred home initially, you will be offered an interim care home. If you accept the interim care home, you will maintain your spot on the waitlist for your preferred care home. When a new bed becomes available in your preferred location, you will have the choice of accepting or declining it.

Private pay long-term care

Private pay long-term care services are paid for by the resident and not funded by Vancouver Coastal Health or the province. An assessment by Vancouver Coastal Health staff is not needed for admission to a private pay residence. Depending on individual circumstances, private pay long-term care may be the right option for either temporary or permanent care.

There are many private pay care homes to choose from, each offering a variety of services and features. Some homes have both publicly subsidized and private pay rooms. You can contact the BC Care Providers Association or visit the Care Guide website to find additional listings and information.

It is important to know that choosing to pay privately on a temporary basis does not guarantee you will be transferred to a subsidized bed in the same building.

Approximate care costs, overall affordability and the type of care required should be carefully considered when choosing a private pay residence. It is best to contact the homes directly for detailed information about availability, costs and services.

SOURCE: How do I access long-term care? ( )
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