Program, which provides basic dental
coverage up to $5,000 every five years.
• The Optical Assistance for Seniors
Program, which provides up to $230
for prescription eyeglasses every
three years. Eye examinations are
also covered if received in Alberta.
Optometry benefits are limited to one
complete exam, one partial exam
and one diagnostic procedure per
Seniors and their dependents get
hearing aids through the Alberta Aids to
Daily Living program.
When caregivers need care
Caregivers are parents, children, siblings,
spouses, friends and neighbours who
look after someone’s healthcare and
daily living needs. Together, they form
an important part of our healthcare
The time and energy family and
friends devote to caring for loved ones
can be physically, emotionally and
financially taxing. Alberta’s caregivers
have lots of places they can turn to for a
break or an extra set of hands.
Alberta Health Services home-care
programs bring expert services right to
“We provide not just respite, but
come into the home to provide direct
care,” says Deb Trumbley, a director
with AHS’s Home Care Development.
“Healthcare aides provide assistance
with bathing and dressing throughout
the day; licensed practical nurses provide
medical care as required and can assist
with procedures such as simple wound
care; and RNs provide more complex
medical care, including IV support.”
When caregivers need rest, they can
use respite beds in continuing care
facilities across the province for up to
six weeks every year. Caregivers can see
therapists and specialists and take a step
back from their responsibilities.
Caregivers also pool their knowledge
and connect with each other through
community organizations such as
Caregivers Alberta ( caregiversalberta.ca),
which has a network of contacts from
Lethbridge to Fort McMurray.
The group offers a variety of
programs, including COMPASS. Led by
an experienced caregiver, this workshop
helps people learn to manage their
stress and use tools to navigate the
To learn more:
• Call the caregiver adviser toll-free at
• Call Health Link at 811
• Talk to your family doctor.
The National Seniors Strategy for
Canadians says a lack of funding and
financial assistance is one of the biggest
challenges facing Canadian caregivers.
Caregivers can receive financial aid
through these federal government
• Employment Insurance’s
compassionate care benefits program
helps family members for up to six
weeks while they take time away from
work as a caregiver. Visit canada.ca
and search for: compassionate care
• The family caregiver amount tax
exemption is available when you file
your income tax. For details, visit