Apr 16, 2014
By Andy Johnson
Ontario Health Minister Deb Matthews says she’s aware that seniors with dementia, are being drugged in provincially regulated nursing homes to help control their behaviour, but she says the province is working to develop alternatives. Matthews told Dale Goldhawk on the new AM 740 today that she sees this as a serious issue and believes Behavioral Supports Ontario is on the right track in developing strategies that don’t involve drug use. The government is working to ensure that nurse practitioners are in provincially regulated nursing homes every day, training staff on how to best care for seniors with behavioural challenges. Mathews was reacting to published reports that provincially regulated nursing homes, often struggling with staff shortages, are routinely doling out powerful anti-psychotic drugs that can kill elderly patients suffering from dementia.