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Media Release

WRHA responds to increasing need for specialized dementia care

11 beds added at Deer Lodge Centre

Winnipeg Regional Health Authority
Thursday, November 16, 2017

The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) today opened new long-term care beds designed for seniors with behavioral or psychological symptoms related to dementia.

The beds will be located in the Special Needs Behavioral Unit (SNBU) at Deer Lodge Centre and serve a growing need for support of residents with complex psychological needs.

"For patients and families, dealing with the challenge of dementia is extremely difficult," said Kelvin Goertzen, Minister of Health, Seniors and Active Living. "These new beds at Deer Lodge Centre will provide more timely access to care and will allow seniors experiencing challenges related to dementia to enjoy an improved quality of life."

Seniors with behavioural or psychological care needs often have long stays in hospital and need more support than is available in a general personal care home. The SNBU model creates smaller, specialized environments with staff trained in the care these residents require.

"We’re extremely pleased to open these additional beds, knowing how important it is to offer the right care within the right environment," says Hana Forbes, WRHA executive director, long-term care. "Bringing together the necessary clinical, recreational and support resources builds our capacity to provide quality care to long term care residents, while ensuring timely access.

Today’s announcement of 11 additional beds in a newly renovated unit at Deer Lodge Centre brings the total number of SNBU beds at the site to 32 and the total number in the region to 74. Other sites that include an SNBU are Actionmarguerite St. Boniface and Riverview Health Centre.

"Deer Lodge Centre has long been a centre of excellence for the aging population and has a history of championing mental health concerns for seniors," said Kevin Scott, chief operating officer, Deer Lodge Centre. "We are pleased to be able to continue to offer these services to seniors within Winnipeg and support the work of the WRHA to improve access to appropriate health services to all Manitobans."