Seniors office seeks White Rock volunteers

BC Office of the Seniors Advocate is looking for volunteers to help interview 27,000 residents in 303 publicly funded care homes.

The BC Office of the Seniors Advocate is looking for volunteers to interview 27,000 residents in 303 publicly funded care homes across the province.

Eight of the publicly funded care homes are within the South Surrey/White Rock area; five have yet to be surveyed.

Volunteers will conduct interviews using a standardized questionnaire. In addition, the resident’s most frequent visitor will be asked to provide feedback about their observations.

It’s the first time Seniors Advocate has conducted a survey of this magnitude and it promised to publicly release the data once the survey is completed.

Lillian Parsons, project manager for Providence Health Care, says this survey is intended to show a well-rounded picture of the quality of care in care homes.

She pointed to a news item from last summer.

In August, CTV News reported complaints from an Australian woman that her 87-year-old mother, wasn’t getting the help she needs in Rosemary Heights Seniors Village in South Surrey. The woman was quoted saying her mother had to sit in her own feces for an extended period of time because of low staffing levels.

“Is that what the general experience of residents is like? Or, is that just one horrible story?” Parsons said. “And though that one horrible story should have never happened and it’s awful. What else is working?”

Rosemary Heights Seniors Village is included in the survey.

Once the survey is completed the results will be released in “many different facets.”

Care homes will be scored on each questionnaire category, which includes food, safety, privacy and activities.

The BCOSA is searching for volunteers who can commit 30 hours over a six to eight week period. Volunteers can choose the days, times and locations of where they will conduct interviews.

BCOSA wishes to complete the survey by February.

Information on becoming a volunteer can be found at www.surveybcseniors.org

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