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On the 8 May 2018 Anton Trstenjak Institute for Gerontology and Intergenerational relations, along with family carers and under the patronage of the Ministry of Health and Eurocarers, carried out the First Slovenian conference on informal care.

The conference was attended by more than 260 people: family and other informal carers, representatives of the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities and Ministry of Environment and Spatial Planning, NGO representatives, mayors and other local representatives, experts from the health and social fields and media.

Conclusions of the conference:

  1. Family and other informal carers are indispensable part of quality and financially sustainable long term care. In Slovenia, like in most European countries, they carry the weight of 75% of entire long term care.
  2. Current system of long term care can be humane and financially sustainable only if formal and informal care are systematically linked into complementary and synergistic unity.
  3. The condition for development of the quality long term care is intensive development of modern supportive programs for relief of and support for family and other informal carers (through education, local supportive programs and by assurance of their legal rights, enabling them to take time off and providing the possibility for better life-work balance).
  4. Family carers are currently the weakest link among long term care stakeholders in Slovenia. If politicians start to use their situation as an instrument for their power struggle the consequences could be fatal for development of the long term care as for the carers themselves.
  5. Long term care should be centred in local communities - the same as child care; the role of the national government is to regulate these holistic long term systems with appropriate legislation, system of just and sustainable financing (at least 1,3% of GDP should be used for long term care - the same as average amount in other EU countries; the current scheme in Slovenia predicts 0,9%), development of programs and quality control.
  6. Long term care will not only be one of the biggest challenges of our society but also a great opportunity for swift development of solidarity and better coexistence in our modern world where traditional patterns of solidarity are disappearing.

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