Overview

It is estimated 1 in 5 Albertans will be 65+ by 2046 – that is more than 1.2 million people.

The need for community care and continuing care is expected to rise significantly over the next 10 years as Albertans are living longer with increasingly complex needs. There is an identified need to develop specialized housing options that can address the unique care and supports for people living with dementia, young adults with disabilities and others living with overlapping health needs.

The Continuing Care Capital Program was announced in March 2021 to increase the number of continuing care spaces and modernize existing aging continuing care homes in Alberta. The program is comprised of multiple grant streams that provide one-time capital funding to:

  • develop continuing care capacity with Indigenous groups and organizations
  • develop new spaces in priority communities
  • modernize existing aging and/or outdated continuing care homes
  • develop small care home settings

Funding

The Alberta government committed $310 million over 3 years in Budget 2023 for the multiple grant streams within the Continuing Care Capital Program. The amount of this funding allocated to each grant stream will be determined by several variables within each grant stream. This includes:

  • the number of applications received
  • alignment with Alberta Health Services’ (AHS) capacity need
  • number of projects the evaluation team recommends
  • amount of available funding
  • ministerial approval

Indigenous Stream

Indigenous Elders and community members need access to culturally appropriate health care in the communities they call home. In alignment with recommendations from the Facility-Based Continuing Care Review (FBCC Review), the Indigenous Stream provides capital grant funding to support the development of culturally appropriate continuing care spaces for Indigenous groups on- or off-reserve and on- or off-Metis settlements. The first intake of grants launched in August 2021 and closed in December 2021. A second intake of grant applications for Indigenous groups is expected later this year. Updates will be posted here when available.

Priority Communities Stream

Priority communities are identified by AHS based on areas having the greatest need for continuing care accommodation and services. In 2024, grants to increase the supply of continuing care spaces located in priority communities in the province will be available. These grants support FBCC Review recommendations for increasing continuing care capacity that meets the latest continuing care design standards. Updates will be posted here when available.

Modernization Stream

These grants provide one-time capital funding to replace or renovate aging and/or outdated existing continuing care homes. Through this initiative, the Government of Alberta is helping to strengthen the quality and long-term sustainability of the continuing care system. The Modernization stream responds to recommendations in the FBCC Review for the government to focus capital investments on the regeneration or replacement of existing continuing care spaces, revise the design guidelines for continuing care homes to incorporate findings regarding the spread of infectious diseases, and permanently phase out shared rooms. The inaugural grant intake for the Modernization Stream launched on September 20, 2022 and closed on January 6, 2023. 

Small Care Home Stream

This stream focuses on expanding community care and continuing care capacity in the province by creating small standalone homes that house 4 to 14 residents with health care needs. The development of small care homes will enable Albertans to age in their communities close to family and friends and can improve access to services and supports for populations with complex health needs and for Albertans in rural and remote communities. This grant stream aligns with recommendations from the FBCC Review to refocus capital grant programs to support more person-centred models of care such as smaller care homes. The inaugural Small Care Home Stream launched on April 25, 2023, and closed November 30, 2023.

How to apply

All application materials and eligibility criteria for the associated grant stream will be posted on this webpage when a grant intake launches.

Continuing Care Design

All newly constructed continuing care homes that receive capital funding through the Continuing Care Capital Program and/or are contracted with AHS must meet the “Continuing Care Design Standards and Best Practices” or the “Small Care Home Design Requirements Checklist”. The “Continuing Care Design Standards and Best Practices” is specifically targeted to continuing care homes larger than 14 spaces. Continuing care homes or supportive living accommodations that are 4 to 14 spaces can use the “Small Care Home Design Requirements Checklist”.

These documents are based on industry standards, best practices, evidence-based research, COVID-19 learnings, and recommendations from the FBCC Review. They will be reviewed and updated periodically to reflect changing delivery practices, technologies, emerging research, evaluation findings, and expectations.

Please note, the above documents do not address all facility and design requirements for a continuing care home. Developers will need to ensure their designs meet or exceed all legislated requirements. This includes all provincial and federal building, fire, life and safety codes, as well as requirements from authorities having jurisdiction such as local bylaws, land use (for example, zoning) restrictions, and permit conditions. In cases of difference between these documents and National/Provincial Codes, the most restricted and higher requirements shall govern.