The first of 11 new long-term care facilities announced by the province in December 2007 opens today, May 27. Debert Court in Colchester County is the first long-term care facility in Nova Scotia built using the Department of Health’s new design standards which emphasize smaller, one-storey buildings with more home-like surroundings. “Our goal is to give Nova Scotians a comfortable place to live that they can call home,” said Keith Menzies, the Department of Health’s executive director of continuing care. Debert Court is part of the province’s Continuing Care Strategy that will create 1,600 new beds and replace 1,300 beds by 2015-16. Shannex, which was awarded nine of the 11 new long-term care facilities, will operate Debert Court. When full, the facility will be home to 36 people who require nursing home-level support. “With the opening of Debert Court, we are able to bring individuals who have been waiting in other facilities back to their home area where they will be closer to their family and friends”, said Jason Shannon, chief operating officer of Shannex. “The community has welcomed us warmly, and we are pleased that more than 45 individuals from Debert and surrounding areas have decided to join the Shannex team, and are now employed at Debert Court.” Debert Court has three interior households. Each household has a kitchen, living room and dining room plus 12 private suites. Each suite has a wheelchair-accessible washroom. An outdoor garden can be accessed from the living room of each household so residents can enjoy outdoor activities. Residents have access to 24-hour nursing care, medical services, nutrition services, pharmacy services, occupational therapy, and physiotherapy. A variety of recreation programs and activities are available. Access to Debert Court is through the Department of Health’s Continuing Care Services at 1-800-225-7225.
“Saving lives must be the top priority for all and, in light of the recent increase in arrivals, I urge further efforts to rescue people along this dangerous route,” said UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi in a press statement after more than 6,000 people crossed the Mediterranean to reach Italy just over the past weekend. Some 75 people have died since last Thursday. The Central Mediterranean – with smugglers trafficking people from the shores of Libya to Italy – has proven to be particularly deadly. Out on the open sea, approximately 1,150 people have either disappeared or lost their lives in 2017.In a response to the recent stories reported to his teams by survivors, Mr. Grandi said that he is “profoundly shocked by the violence used by some smugglers,” pointing specifically to the recent merciless killing of young man a few days ago. As the “Central Mediterranean route continues to be particularly dangerous this year, also for 2016 the UN recorded more deaths at sea than ever before. The main cause of shipwrecks, according to the Office of the High Commissioner (UNHCR), are the increasing numbers of passengers on board vessels used by traffickers, the worsening quality of vessels and the increasing use of rubber boats instead of wooden ones.With the total numbers of death rising, the total number of registered arrivals for 2017 – the number of people that made it safely to the registration centres – has exceeded 43,000, according to aggregated numbers of UNHCR. They alerted parties earlier this year that in 2016, some 181,436 arrived in Italy by sea.He called on European and other donor countries to redouble their efforts to solve conflicts, especially in Africa, and to use development resources much more strategically in order to reduce poverty, mitigate the effects of climate change, and to support countries hosting large numbers of refugees, as well as transit countries.A recent report from the UN World Food Programme (WFP) entitled At the Root of Exodus: Food security, conflict and international migration, spotlighted the complex link between food insecurity and migration – where increase in one forces the other to rise and then spirals back to push the former even higher.