Frances Morton-Chang, MHSc, PhD. is the Director of Assisted Living and Seniors’ Services at Woodgreen Community Services in Toronto and adjunct faculty at the University of Toronto Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation (IHPME). She is a gerontologist and health services researcher with boundary spanning academic and professional experience across the broader health care spectrum including the community, acute-care, and long-term care home sectors, charities and research programs. Frances’ research and practice has largely focused on integrated care for high needs populations and their caregivers including those experiencing complex and often multiple health and social care needs (i.e., dementia, frailty, mental health, poverty) and translating findings into tangible tools, practices and interventions. She is the proud recipient of the Banting and Best CIHR Doctoral Award which supported her doctoral research on tipping points to nursing home care and the policy trajectory for dementia care in Ontario. As an inaugural CIHR Health Systems Impact Fellow with AdvantAge Ontario and IHPME at the University of Toronto, Frances investigated Seniors’ Campuses as integrating mechanisms for broad spectrum senior care. This compliments her Postdoctoral Fellowship for another CIHR funded cross-level and multijurisdictional project – iCOACH – where she was a health policy researcher on a team investigating the implementation of Integrated Community-Based Primary Care for Seniors.Innovation
Seniors’ Campuses – Local Solutions for Broad Spectrum Seniors Care
Seniors’ campuses are innovative care models that seek to address the health and well-being of individuals and the broader healthcare system. Campuses physically co-locate and offer a broad range of inter-related seniors’ health and social services and supports through closely coordinated service delivery, collaborative partnerships and shared infrastructure. Seniors’ campuses optimize linkages and community arrangements to support a diverse range of care needs across a continuum (e.g., lighter coping care supports to higher intensity care for increasing frailty, cognitive, developmental and/or physical disabilities) for residents of the campus and neighbouring community. Supports include mixed income housing and supports such as supportive housing, assisted living programs, nutrition monitoring, personal care, case management, respite care, recreation opportunities, and institutional long-term care. Campuses often tailor their offerings to meet local community housing needs as well as local ethno/ cultural/ linguistic needs. Campuses also provide rich employment, training, research and volunteer opportunities.
In this connection, seniors’ campuses are innovative local solutions that offer great promise to address system capacity issues (e.g., growing need for seniors housing with supports; the potential to mitigate unnecessary hospital visits or stays; avoidance of premature placement to long-term care); organizational efficiencies (e.g., maximizing infrastructure and economies of scale to improve experience, quality of life and value for money in providing care for older adults living with frailty on campus and neighbouring community); and the needs of individuals (e.g., the ability to adapt for changing and increasingly levels of need for residents and informal caregivers) thus extending seniors’ ability to live and meaningfully engage in their chosen community.