03/17/2015 05:50 EDT | Updated 05/17/2015 05:12 EDT

NDP says Saskatchewan seniors care homes understaffed; poor care for residents

REGINA - Saskatchewan's Opposition says a seniors care home in Swift Current is understaffed with one aide for every 10 residents.

NDP Leader Cam Broten says the government is ignoring a widespread pattern of too few workers in homes across the province.

Three women who have relatives at the Prairie Pioneers Lodge say staff don't have enough time to ensure good care, nutritious meals and cleanliness.

Betsy Ryan, whose 92-year-old mother is at the home, says aides are overworked and are responsible for personal care, cooking, cleaning and laundry.

She adds that she is concerned about her mother's health and safety.

Greg Ottenbreit, the minister responsible for rural and remote health, says the staff-to-resident ratio has been improving at the facility.

He says it's up to health regions to make sure there are enough workers to care for residents.

He adds that similar homes with equal staffing levels in other communities have been successful.

The NDP has been criticizing seniors care in Saskatchewan for months and the ombudsman is investigating cases of alleged neglect.