Doctor house calls part of Ontario plan to keep seniors at home longer

Ontario Minister of Health and Long-Term Care Deb Matthews speaks with Dr. Samir Sinha, left, at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto on Thursday May 24, 2012. Matthews announced the next steps in Ontario's Senior Care Strategy to help seniors stay healthy and live at home longer. Dr. Sinha will lead the development and implementation of the strategy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Aaron Vincent Elkaim
Ontario Minister of Health and Long-Term Care Deb Matthews speaks with Dr. Samir Sinha, left, at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto on Thursday May 24, 2012. Matthews announced the next steps in Ontario’s Senior Care Strategy to help seniors stay healthy and live at home longer. Dr. Sinha will lead the development and implementation of the strategy. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Aaron Vincent Elkaim

Ontario Minister of Health and Long-Term Care Deb Matthews speaks with Dr. Samir Sinha, left, at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto on Thursday May 24, 2012. Matthews announced the next steps in Ontario’s Senior Care Strategy to help seniors stay healthy and live at home longer. Dr. Sinha will lead the development and implementation of the strategy.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Aaron Vincent Elkaim

TORONTO – The Ontario government has outlined the next step in its strategy to keep seniors in their homes longer.

Health Minister Deb Matthews says proposed measures include more house calls by doctors, more access to home care for seniors in need, and special co-ordinators to ensure seniors receive the right care.

It also includes a home-renovation tax credit for seniors to adapt their homes as they get older.

Dr. Samir Sinha, director of geriatrics at Mount Sinai Hospital, will oversee the process.

Matthews says Sinha will hold consultations over the summer and report to the government in the fall on how to best implement the strategy.

The government says older adults make up 14 per cent of Ontario’s population and account for nearly half of current health-care spending in the province.