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Words Matter - Name Change From Residential Services to Long-term Care Program

You may have noticed a shift in language from Residential Care to Long-term Care. Now we are making it official.

The term ‘residential’ has many negative connotations for our Indigenous partners and First Nations communities. The harms of residential schools are deep and long lasting, and there is still a lot of work to do.

At Island Health it is vital that all our patients, residents and clients feel comfortable and safe in our care and facilities. This name change is a small step in our journey of reconciliation and an effort to increase a sense of Cultural Safety for Indigenous peoples.  

Cultural Safety plays an important role in healing, not only physical illness but in the healing of a sad and painful history.

You may have already noticed this shift in language in materials from Island Health. Our Long-Term Care Program has updated their intranet site and the Ministry of Health has also formalized this important change in language.

Please ensure all future communications and correspondence uses Long-term Care instead of Residential Care. (Note that we are using a hyphen.)

Here is a more complete list of the changes:

·       Residential care facility becomes Long-term care home

·       Residential care services becomes long-term care services

·       Short-term residential care services becomes Short-stay services

·       Residential hospice palliative care becomes hospice care

The Long-term Care program at Island Health will be working over the coming weeks to update all of our online programs and materials, but this transition will take time.

If you see something with the old language, please email graham.duffell@viha.ca to let the program know.