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Slaight gift creates a new model of care to help vulnerable seniors

October 1, 2019

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Through a $1 million investment announced today, The Slaight Family Foundation has established the Senior Care Navigation Pilot, a landmark partnership between Sunnybrook and SPRINT Senior Care to advance a new model of care to help seniors and their families.

The Senior Care Navigation Pilot will introduce a new community care navigator role in the Sunnybrook Emergency Department and across clinical settings to identify and help seniors with complex care needs return to their homes. The care navigator will facilitate a seamless transition, coordinated and aligned to ensure seniors receive the full range of appropriate services to remain safely at home.

This new initiative comes at a time when hospital emergency departments face a rising number of seniors seeking care out of a sense of desperation and a lack of appropriate supports, and who would be better served in their community.

"The health and well-being of our seniors is not a new challenge, but it is a challenge of ever growing urgency as our population ages," says Dr. Andy Smith, Sunnybrook's president and CEO. "We applaud The Slaight Family Foundation for not only recognizing the scope of the problem, but for encouraging partnerships across the health and community sectors to drive innovation."

A SPRINT Senior Care employee will be integrated into Sunnybrook’s Emergency Department team as a community navigator.

The community navigator will connect with seniors in the Emergency Department and lead the creation of a customized care plan, working with hospital staff and agencies in each senior’s local community. Seniors and their caregivers will be connected to the right community resources and supports to keep them healthy at home and ensure continuity of care.

“With this generous gift, The Slaight Family Foundation is recognizing the importance of collaboration between hospitals and community care organizations to support seniors to remain in their homes,” says SPRINT Senior Care CEO Stacy Landau. “Together, we will ensure that Toronto seniors are receiving the community and homecare support that they need when they leave the hospital.”

The Slaight Family Foundation's investment in Sunnybrook is part of a historic $30-million gift to 13 hospitals in Toronto and four national organizations as part of The Slaight Family Foundation Seniors Initiative.

“Seniors are Canada’s fastest growing demographic, yet a very under-supported and vulnerable population. Finding new ways of assisting seniors, particularly those who have trouble accessing our health and social services due to poverty or other barriers, is essential to helping keep people healthier longer and in their own communities,” says Gary Slaight of The Slaight Family Foundation. “This gift is only possible due to our father Allan Slaight’s foresight, business acumen and philanthropic leadership. We hope these new models and programs will serve as change agents in moving support and care for our seniors forward for years to come.”

About The Slaight Family Foundation
The Slaight Family Foundation takes a strategic approach to philanthropy, addressing specific issues facing society in partnership with multiple organizations at the same time. The Slaight Family Seniors Initiative is the fifth major funded initiative supporting numerous organizations on the same theme in hopes of gaining quicker and improved results in a variety of sectors. Previous initiatives included $50 million in 2013 to five hospitals in Toronto to support the delivery of advanced healthcare; $7 million in 2015 to seven Canadian NGOs to support Canada’s lifesaving efforts in global humanitarian; $11 million in 2016 to support the healthy development of children and youth across Canada via 11 national organizations; and $12 million in 2017 to 15 charities and national organizations working to improve the physical, mental and social well-being of Canada’s Indigenous population.

About Sunnybrook
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre is inventing the future of health care for the 1.3 million patients the hospital cares for each year through the dedication of its more than 13,000 staff, students and volunteers. Founded as a hospital for veterans, Sunnybrook is a leading academic health sciences centre with a robust focus on senior care. Our Specialized Geriatric Services offers comprehensive care under the leadership of recognized experts, and is complemented by a hospital-wide seniors’ strategy that informs all other hospital care programs such as cancer, mental health and orthopaedics.

Sunnybrook also specializes in caring for high-risk pregnancies, critically-ill newborns and adults, offering specialized rehabilitation and treating and preventing cancer, cardiovascular disease, neurological and psychiatric disorders, orthopaedic and arthritic conditions and traumatic injuries. For more information about how Sunnybrook is inventing the future of health care, please visit sunnybrook.ca.

About SPRINT Senior Care
SPRINT Senior Care is an accredited, not-for-profit community support service agency in Toronto offering a wide range of practical and low-cost services to 4,000 seniors and caregivers annually. These services include home care, meals on wheels, social work, supportive housing, transitional care, dementia care, community wellness programs and transportation. SPRINT Senior Care’s services help seniors stay safe, connected, and live as independently as possible, as well as prevent premature or inappropriate institutionalization. SPRINT Senior Care co-directs House Calls, an interdisciplinary primary care program for frail and homebound seniors. SPRINT Senior Care is also the lead agency of Toronto Ride, a transportation network that provides rides to seniors across the GTA. For more information about our programs and services for seniors, please visit sprintseniorcare.org.

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Media contacts

Sunnybrook:
Laura Bristow
Communications Advisor, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
(416) 480-6100 Ext.2663
laura.bristow@sunnybrook.ca

SPRINT Senior Care:
Alison Shouldice
Communications and Development Lead, SPRINT Senior Care
416-481-0669 ext. 248
alison.shouldice@sprintseniorcare.org