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Statement on Government’s Decision to Increase Public Long-term Care Rates

As the PEI Liberal health critic, I am deeply dismayed and frustrated by this government’s decision to increase public long-term care rates for the second time in eight months. Health PEI has provided no explanation for this steep hike other than a vague reference to keeping in line with private rates. Why is our government following the lead of private sector businesses, which prioritize profits over people?

Long-term care rates should be regulated and predictable, based on transparent calculations, not the fluctuating demands of the private market. Seniors needing care should not be treated like commodities. This latest increase is coming at a time when families are already grappling with fixed incomes and rising costs of essential needs. It is grossly unfair to burden seniors and their families with additional financial strain right now. Long-term care beds are an essential service that many vulnerable individuals depend on. This large, unexpected increase will only add further strain to those already struggling to make ends meet.

Adding insult to injury, this government recently handed $25 million to private long-term care providers, a giant subsidy for private operators who are primarily focused on profits. This glaring inconsistency reveals a government more interested in supporting private enterprises than in ensuring affordable, accessible care for our seniors. Our seniors have contributed to this province their entire lives. They deserve better than a government that treats them as a financial liability. It’s high time this government took responsibility for its actions and prioritized the health and well-being of Islanders over profit margins.

Gord McNeilly

MLA, Charlottetown-West Royalty


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