Revera Inc. Retirement homes Cancel Controversial Service Fees

Residents of local Revera Inc. retirement homes are dodging a spike to their service fees after the company backed down on a new model.
“I think they’ll probably just put it on hold for awhile,” said Marlene Kawalez, whose 82-year-old mother Anna lives at Fergus Place in Kitchener.

The company, which operates nearly 250 residences in Canada and the U.S., proposed a new fee-for-service model in July. The model that featured an “à la carte” list of services ranged from charges of $235 per month for medication administration to $396 for eye drops twice daily en suite.

For Kawalez, this would have meant a $900 increase to the almost $2,500 already being paid for her mother to live at the home.
According to Revera spokesperson Sandra Vlaar Ingram, in mid-August the company decided not to move forward with the new fee structure.

The decision was made because of feedback from their residents, she said.

“We listened to the feedback of our residents and made a decision to go back to previous structures,” she said.

“Our most important thing right now is that our residents are satisfied with the approach we’re taking.”

The fees were initially proposed to address the “widely varying needs” of retirement residents and offer “customized care options,” said Vlaar Ingram.

Services provided by the company should not be changing with the cancellation of the proposed fee model and the spokesperson said the company is not pursuing other increase options.

Specific costs for current services were not provided by the company.

Ardyss Daniels, 83, a resident of Revera’s Highland Place in Kitchener, said in her opinion, the company received a lot of flak for the service fees.
Kawalez, who was among those opposed to the fee change, said other families at Fergus Place were not only vocal about their opposition but found new homes for their aging loved ones.

“A lot of people have left, which was too bad because they were lovely people,” said Kawalez.
Specifically, she noted that the woman living in the room neighbouring her mother’s had moved due to the increased expense.

However, Vlaar Ingram said she was unaware that anyone had moved in response to the fee increase proposal.
“We haven’t had that feedback,” said Vlaar Ingram.

For residents who signed a new agreement and were billed at the new fee levels, Vlaar Ingram said they will be credited to their accounts.

Source: Waterloo Region Record , 2012 Torstar Corporation

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