More facilities to help seniors age-in-place

The Ministry of Health (MOH) and the Ministry for Community Development, Youth and Sports (MCYS) announce today the development of new nursing homes, Senior Care Centres (SCCs) and Senior Activity Centres (SACs) from now till 2016, to support a growing senior population in Singapore.

Creating Senior-Friendly Neighbourhoods Islandwide

2     Singapore’s population will age more rapidly in the next two decades. Our senior population above 65 years old will grow to more than 900,000 by 2030, enough to fill nine Toa Payoh towns today. To prepare for the future where one-fifth of our resident population are above 65 years old, we need to act now to build more national aged care capacity, to meet the anticipated increase in care needs.

3     The government plans to locate aged care and support facilities within the community so that more seniors can age gracefully within the community and close to their loved ones, for as long as possible. Our long-term aim is to make every neighbourhood a senior-friendly one. We need to develop a range of aged care services in every neighbourhood to meet seniors’ social and healthcare needs, to make care accessible to seniors needing care and to support their caregivers, and also to allow families to remain in close contact with the seniors even if they need to be cared for within institutions.

New Aged Care Community Facilities

4     MCYS and MOH will jointly develop the following range of aged community facilities in HDB towns:

(a) Senior Activity Centres (SACs)

MCYS will be developing 56 new Senior Activity Centres by 2016. Of the 56 centres, 45 will be set up in Ang Mo Kio, Bedok, Bukit Batok, Bukit Merah, Bukit Panjang, Bukit Timah, Choa Chu Kang, Geylang, Hougang, Jurong West, Kallang, Pasir Ris, Punggol, Queenstown, Sengkang, Novena, Tampines, Toa Payoh, Woodlands and Yishun.

Seniors can visit these centres to make friends and engage in regular social activities. They may also receive social support, especially if they are living alone. SACs will largely be sited at rental blocks or studio apartments. They will be operated by VWOs or commercial operators.

(b) Senior Care Centres (SCCs)

MCYS will be developing 39 new Senior Care Centres by 2016 to meet increasing demand for aged care in the community. The location of 21 of these centres have been confirmed to be in Bedok, Bukit Batok, Bukit Merah, Geylang, Hougang, Jurong West, Kallang, Pasir Ris, Punggol, Queenstown, Sengkang, Serangoon, Tampines, Toa Payoh, Woodlands, Yishun.

Senior Care Centres, formerly known as Integrated Day Facilities, will provide day care, dementia day care, day rehabilitation services and basic nursing services. Families can drop off their aged parents at the Centres during the day and have the peace of mind to focus on their work, knowing their parents are being cared for.

The Centres will, over time, also offer personal care services at the homes of the seniors, including personal hygiene, laundry and meal services. Today, service providers send care workers directly to the homes of seniors, from their main office. In future, Senior Care Centres may serve as staging points for the delivery of home care services. This should raise efficiency in service delivery.

(c) Nursing Homes

MOH will be developing a total of 10 new nursing homes from now till 2016 to meet the demand for nursing home services. The nursing homes will complement home care and community centre-based services, by providing residential nursing care for seniors who are very frail and need a longer period of recuperation.

The new nursing home sites will be located in Ang Mo Kio, Chai Chee, Choa Chu Kang, Geylang, Hougang, Jurong East, Jurong West, Queenstown, Radin Mas and Yishun. The 10 nursing homes will add an estimated 3,300 beds to our existing nursing home capacity of 9,000.

By locating the nursing homes within the community, we hope to allow seniors who need care to be cared for closer to home, and make it more convenient for families to visit them. Nursing homes in residential estates will also better complement the existing spectrum of healthcare services in the vicinity, such as hospitals, community hospitals, day rehabilitation centres and clinics, and make care more seamless for our seniors.

Conclusion

5     Altogether, MOH and MCYS have confirmed sites to build 10 nursing homes, 21 SCCs, and 45 SACs by 2016. These facilities are part of the government’s plan to enhance aged care services to support an ageing population. More facilities may be added in tandem with demand, in the future.


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