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N.S. to spend $2 million to help more seniors live independently at home

A seniors hands are seen in an undated file photo. A seniors hands are seen in an undated file photo.
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The province of Nova Scotia is spending $2 million to allow more seniors in Halifax to get access to a program which aims to allow them to live safely and independently at home.

The Community Aging in Place, Advancing Better Living for Elders (CAPABLE) program will pair eligible seniors with a nurse, occupational therapist, or handyperson to help them with their daily activities at home, according to a government news release.

“There’s been significant interest and enthusiasm for CAPABLE since it launched in Preston Township and Kings County. We are hearing from clients that even after initial visits they already see improvements in their safety and independence at home,” says Jeff Densmore, associate vice-president of home and community care with the Nova Scotia Victorian Order of Nurses.

The teams in the program are able to review a person’s medications and test their pain and mobility in order to see what could be improved or changed.

After assessing the senior, the professionals make recommendations, which could include:

  •  communicating with the person’s healthcare team about options to modify medications, if appropriate
  •  sharing new skills and exercises
  •  making minor changes in the home to improve safety and accessibility, such as lowering shelves, rearranging furniture, improving lighting and installing grab bars

The program is already available in Kings County and the communities of Cherry Brook, Lake Loon, North Preston, East Preston and the surrounding area, and will now be expanding to Spryfield, Herring Cove, Clayton Park West, and downtown Halifax. It will be available to 300 seniors across all of the communities.

In order to qualify, the person must:

  • be 65 years old or older
  • have physical or mobility challenges
  • have a net income of $85,000 or less or receive income assistance, the province’s heating assistance rebate or the guaranteed income supplement from Service Canada

Seniors can apply for the program beginning on Monday on the CAPABLE website.

“This program has opened doors for me because I am starting to think about my future more and taking measures to support my health so that I can stay in my home and community, where I’m most comfortable. I love this program and that it’s being made available to more people so they can remain in their own homes and keep their independence for as long as possible,” says Mady Howe, a CAPABLE client in East Preston.

For more Nova Scotia news visit our dedicated provincial page.

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