Senior Friendly Care

Senior Friendly Hospitals — Fostering Excellence 

The vision of the provincial Senior Friendly Hospital Strategy is to improve the experience and outcomes of seniors when they are hospitalized by preventing their physical and mental decline.

To operationalize this vision in the Central East Local Health Integration Network (Central East LHIN), Seniors Care Network established the Central East Senior Friendly Hospital Working Group.  The membership includes representatives from each of the nine hospitals, Seniors Care Network, the Regional Geriatric Program of Toronto and the Central East LHIN.  The purpose of the Senior Friendly Hospita Working Group is to provide the strategic direction and leadership for Senior Friendly Hospital care within the Central East LHIN.  The Working Group fosters a culture where senior friendly care is woven into the fabric of the hospital.

What is A Senior Friendly Hospital?

Care seniors receive while in a hospital, and the hospital experience itself, can impact their health and well-being. A Senior Friendly Hospital is one in which the environment, organizational culture, and ways of care-giving accommodate and respond to seniors’ physical and cognitive needs, promote good health (e.g. nutrition and functional activity), maximize safety (e.g. preventing adverse events like a fall in the hospital), and involve patients – along with families and caregivers – to be full participants in their care. The aim is to enable seniors to maintain optimal health while they are hospitalized so that they can return home or transition to the next level of care that best meets their needs.

Shared Goals:

  • Having hospital leadership and support in place to make senior friendly care an organizational priority
  • Providing care based on best practices for seniors care so their independence is preserved
  • Delivering care and service in a way that is free of ageism and respects the unique needs of patients and their caregivers
  • Addressing unique ethical situations in seniors care and research as they arise
  • Ensuring the hospital’s physical environment minimizes the vulnerabilities of frail patients

“The overall vision of the Senior Friendly Hospital Strategy is to enable seniors to maintain optimal health and function while they are hospitalized so that they can transition successfully home or to the next appropriate level of care. The Senior Friendly Hospital Working Group embodies the collective desire for a regional approach to senior friendly hospital care and the need for an ‘enduring’ movement that makes a senior friendly approach simply the way we provide care in our Region.” Kelly Kay, Executive Director, Seniors Care Network

Quotes from two members of the Central East SFH Working Group

“Being part of the Seniors Care Network SFH WG has created a platform of supportive leadership.  It has assisted me in my vision to build excellence of care for seniors within my hospital.  Seniors Care Network has created a network of expertise that our willing to share knowledge to implement change to enhance senior friendly care.”

“Belonging to the working group has helped us re-design our focus for our Geriatrics Operations and Performance Team, encouraged use of best practice for environmental design when ordering items like new chairs, commodes etc. as we have used the Code Plus document.  It allows us to share practices with our peers in other hospitals in the LHIN.”

Resources of Interest

Click here if you are interested in implementing a Senior Friendly Approach in your organization (370KB)

Click here if you are interested in implementing Senior Friendly Walkabouts in your organization (495KB)

For more resources, please visit the resource portion of this site.