Frequently Asked Questions

Continuing Care

I’m not sure if I’m ready for continuing care. How will I know when the time is right?

If you are living in the community and are having difficulty managing your care needs, you may be ready to access continuing care services and supports. The first step is to get a Case Manager. No referral is necessary. Go to Getting a Case Manager to find contact information for the Continuing Care Access Centre in your zone or email

If you’re in hospital, a transition coordinator or discharge planner will work with you to connect you with the support you need to return home.

I think my aging parents need some help at home. What should I do?

If you are advocating for a parent or loved one, you can contact us on their behalf. No referral is necessary and anyone can initiate the process. The first step is to have a Case Manager assigned to begin an assessment.  Go to Getting a Case Manager to find contact information for the Continuing Care Access Centre in their zone or email

How do I know which continuing care services are right for me?

The first step is to have a Case Manager assigned to assist you. No referral is necessary. Go to Getting a Case Manager to find contact information for the Continuing Care Access Centre in your zone or email

Once a Case Manager is assigned, they will assess your needs and work with you to decide which services you require or that best meet your needs. You are encouraged to participate in decisions regarding your care and ask questions about the assessment, continuing care settings, waitlist and transition processes.

If it is determined that a move to a new home in a continuing care facility is right for you, your Case Manager will facilitate communication among care providers, support any necessary transitions, and share information about your needs and goals of care. They will also provide information about appropriate living options that meet your preferences and assessed needs, including potential facilities that can be contacted for a tour (in person or virtual, where available). More information can be found in the Moving to a New Home in Continuing Care guide for patients and families.

I want to stay in my home. What supports are available to help me?

Home Care services can help support you to stay in your home for as long as possible. A variety of services are available based on your needs. Some examples of supports available are personal care and bathing. Both private pay and publicly funded options are available. For information about costs for private care you will need to contact companies directly. Home Care services accessed through an AHS Case Manager are typically covered, at little to no cost to you, through Alberta Health Services if you have Alberta Health Care coverage.

Go to Getting a Case Manager to find contact information for the Continuing Care Access Centre in your zone or email

How do I ask for an increase to the amount of Home Care I am receiving?

There may come a time when your care needs increase. If you notice that everyday activities are becoming more and more difficult, it may be time to consider increasing Home Care services or moving to a new living option that better suits your needs.

If you already have a Case Manager, either through home care or in your current living option, a reassessment of your needs will be completed regularly depending on your care needs. If you feel that your health has changed and you need more support, contact your Case Manager.

If you do not have a Case Manager, go to Getting a Case Manager to find contact information for the Continuing Care Access Centre in your zone or email

What is Designated Supportive Living?

For those who are no longer able to live in their own home, Designated Supportive Living provides a home environment which focuses on health promotion, well-being, independence and maintaining functional abilities. Scheduled professional health services are provided by home care. Nursing and support staff are on site 24-hour a day. To learn more, go to Designated Supportive Living.

Is there a difference between Supportive Living and Designated Supportive Living?

Designated Supportive Living is provided by AHS or through Operators who are contracted with AHS to provide this service.  These spaces are accessed through AHS and you will work with an AHS Case Manager to access these services.

Supporting Living (also referred to as non-designated supportive living) is not provided by AHS or Operators contracted by AHS.  Supportive living spaces are accessed by contacting the site directly.

Both living options have a variety of services available and the costs vary.

Who is best suited to live in a long-term care facility?

Long-term care is best suited to people living with complex chronic health problems that require the oversight of a Registered Nurse 24-hours a day. Long Term Care may be right for you if you have:

  • Serious fluctuations in health status requiring frequent and unscheduled health professional assessment and interventions;
  • Conditions requiring the continued presence of a Registered Nurse
  • Unpredictable or unstable behaviour that places yourself or others at risk;
  • Complex end-of-life care needs.

How do I find a continuing care facility in my area?

Visit our Continuing Care Facility Directory to view continuing care facilities, amenities, costs and services online.

I want to make sure I am close to my family. How do I get into the facility I want?

The Case Manager will provide you with a list of all appropriate living options that meet your preferences and assessed needs. There may be spaces available that meet your needs that you can access through the site directly. There may also be spaces that meet your needs that you will require an AHS Case Manager to access.

If you are assessed as requiring a space that is accessed through an AHS Case Manager, you will be asked to specify one or more of your preferred site(s) from the available options listed by your Case Manager. You can review options and make selections with the support of the Continuing Care Facility Directory and your Case Manager.

You and your Case Manager will take a number of considerations into account when looking for appropriate options, including: services available to meet your care needs, preserving relationships/reunification of relationships, geographical distance and/or location, cultural, linguistic and/or religious preferences, availability of social supports, wait times, and costs for specific sites/spaces.

Once your preferred site(s) have been chosen your name will be added to the waitlist. If the site has availability, you will be offered a space. If your preferred site(s) have no space available, you will be offered a temporary option to meet your current needs until space becomes available at your preferred location. You are encouraged to accept a temporary location until your preferred site becomes available. This will not affect your position on the waitlist and when your preferred site(s) become available your Case Manager will help you seamlessly transition to your new home.

For more information please see the Designated Living Option: Access and Waitlist Management in Continuing Care Procedure.

My family/support system lives in another part of Alberta and I would like to be closer to them. Can I choose a facility near them?

Yes, it is possible to choose any site across Alberta. Your Case Manager will help you to navigate this process. You can also review all of the living options in an area by accessing the Continuing Care Facility Directory.

I have an issue with the care my parent is receiving in a continuing care facility. What can I do?

All concerns raised will be addressed through the AHS Patient Concerns Resolution Process. Additional information is available at Patient Concerns & Feedback. For all concerns, the first step is to speak with a member of the care team or a manager at the site. You have a right to know and understand the patient concerns resolution process and this information should be provided during the admission process and be available on information/quality boards throughout the facility and upon request. 

If you are not satisfied with the response or you are not comfortable speaking to a member of the care team or a manager at the site, please contact AHS Patient Relations by telephone, fax, mail or online.

What is the difference between publicly funded and privately funded care?

Additional information on publicly funded or private for purchase care services can be found at Public vs. Private Care.