8 May 2017
Dr Lim Wee Kiak
MP for Sembawang GRC
To ask the Minister for Social and Family Development (a) whether any study has been done to gauge the demand for residential homes for the elderly as an option to living in nursing homes; and (b) whether there are plans to build such residential homes especially for those who are living alone.
From 2014 to 2015, MOH had engaged over 4,000 Singaporeans on their aspirations and ideas on how the government can help Singaporeans age well to develop the Action Plan for Successful Ageing. Seniors shared that they prefer to age in place in their own homes, surrounded by their loved ones in the community.
HDB has provided more housing options for seniors, such as 2-room flexi flats. MOH complements these housing options by integrating care services with it. In selected new housing estates, MOH is working to co-design and co-locate nursing homes and eldercare facilities within the public housing precinct so that we have a continuum of independent living, assisted and nursing care facilities within the same precinct.
We also need to inject services within existing HDB precincts to help seniors age in place. MOH is on track to reach their target of 6,200 day care places and 10,000 home care places by 2020. MOH is also piloting Integrated Home and Day Care packages to allow seniors to benefit from a flexible mix of home and day care services tailored to suit their needs.
For vulnerable seniors, MSF has set up 19 Senior Cluster Networks to coordinate and integrate services. These networks comprise 69 Senior Activity Centres and 19 case management teams across the island, to reach out to low-income and vulnerable seniors to stay engaged and prevent social isolation. MSF has also set up Senior Group Homes to support frail elderly in rental flats to age within the community, as an alternative to living in nursing homes.
MSF and MOH will continue to provide a range of home and community-based social and care support, and review services regularly to ensure that seniors with diverse needs are able to age gracefully in familiar surroundings.