Rainycrest hikes price of visitors’ meals

The Rainycrest board of management this morning approved an increase to the cost of meals to visitors at the home in an effort to recover costs for the service.
The cost for family and friends visiting residents in the home will increase from $4.25 to $6 for lunch and from $5.25 to $8 for supper. Meals on special occasions such as Thanksgiving will cost $12.
The new prices will take effect Nov. 1, and Rainycrest administration will send letters to residents’ family members informing them of the change.
Rainycrest administrator Jill Colquhoun noted the new prices are in line with other homes for the aged in Northwestern Ontario, and will allow it to break even offering meals to visitors.
Previously, the cost of preparing the meals was greater than the price to visitors.
“We shouldn’t be subsidizing that,” noted Fort Frances Mayor Dan Onichuk, who sits on the Rainycrest board.
“I think the whole concept of somebody being able to visit and share a meal with a spouse or grandparent is great, as long as it’s on a cost recovery [basis],” he added.
Board chair Dennis Brown, who also is the mayor of Atikokan, suggested increasing the meal prices even further—with the goal of making a profit to be put towards the home’s debt.
“We want to generate as much revenue as possible,” he noted.
“But that’s not the business we’re in,” countered Colquhoun.
She added it was important the cost of a meal not be prohibitive to people and prevent them from visiting their loved ones.
“We want that involvement. We don’t want to create a hardship for them,” she stressed. “There are people who eat here four or five times a week.”
Colquhoun said on special occasions there sometimes are a large number of visitors on hand, and it is difficult to know how much food to prepare. At Thanksgiving, for instance, one resident alone had 15 guests.
“We’re hoping to encourage people to order ahead,” she noted.
Rainycrest gives a free meal to the family when a new resident is admitted, she added.