Growing number of seniors lack support of family, friends

Unbefriended,’ these isolated seniors require more help to safeguard their access to basic daily needs, including companionship, and improve their quality of life

Growing number of seniors lack support of family, friendsBy Stephanie A. Chamberlain and Carole A. Estabrooks University of Alberta What happens when a person grows older and can no longer make health and financial decisions for themselves – but also doesn’t have family or friends who can make those decisions on their behalf? Health and social services use a hard-hitting term to describe…

Women more likely to put careers on hold to care for loved ones

CIBC study says 30% of women have reduced or stopped saving as a direct result of care responsibilities

Women more likely to put careers on hold to care for loved onesA new study by CIBC says 69 per cent Canadian women make significant financial sacrifices, including putting their careers on hold to care for loved ones, which can put them at a considerable disadvantage to men when it comes to saving for their retirement. The study also found that 30 per cent of women say they've…

Address your fear of dying, express end-of-life care wishes

As physicians, we see death made worse and more painful every day by poor advance care planning

Address your fear of dying, express end-of-life care wishesBy Paul Hébert and George Heckman Canadian Frailty Network Are you or a loved one aging, perhaps with a chronic heart or lung condition that limits daily activities? Do you have an older parent in a nursing home or who needs assistance with daily living activities? If so, read on and make the pledge. As…

Immunization clinics ongoing across province

People are encouraged to get the flu shot to protect themselves and others

Immunization clinics ongoing across provinceKenneth Brown of The Clarion Health officials in Saskatchewan have launched their annual immunization campaign for seasonal influenza, and walk-in clinics are starting to take place. The first walk-in clinic for Kindersley took place yesterday in the boardroom at the Kindersley & District Health Centre. The official launch of the immunization campaign was Oct. 22.…

Do intentional communities make retirement sense?

Picturing a idyllic rural setting with exercise, freedom, stimulation – and support as needed. All crafted to cater to seniors

Do intentional communities make retirement sense?My Mom is still teaching me life lessons in her 90s. Chief of these recently has been the creation of an intentional community in which to retire. After a year spent essentially nursing my father through his final days in a fashionable, for-profit Vancouver rest home, he died and she decided to move into an…

Who’s caring for the nursing home carers?

Nursing home care aides are burning out but measures can be taken to improve their work conditions. And that will result in better care for their patients

Who’s caring for the nursing home carers?By Carole A. Estabrooks and Stephanie A. Chamberlain University of Alberta Many of us have moms and dads or older friends and relatives in nursing home facilities. We care very much about their well-being and the supports they receive. But who’s caring for the care aides who do the bulk of the front-line work in…

Canada’s health system fails the elderly

Solving long hospital wait times requires a fundamental shift in the way we care for the elderly

Canada’s health system fails the elderlyBy David Wiercigroch University of Toronto and Caberry Weiyang Yu Queen's University Hospital overcrowding is not a new issue. Limited bed spaces have plagued Ontario hospitals for years and are increasingly straining our system. Not only are long wait times a shameful expectation when patients arrive in the emergency department, providing care in a busy…

How to keep your aging mind sharp

Research supports the ‘use it or lose it’ theory of mental ability

How to keep your aging mind sharpJust as we need to exercise our bodies to keep them healthy as we age, we must also exercise our minds to keep them from deteriorating. Research shows that people who engage in more activities that stimulate the mind have sharper cognitive functioning as they age than people who do not challenge their brains. In…

Kindersley forum to help caregivers and parents

May 1 event to help those with children and young adults who have physical, intellectual and medical challenges

Kindersley forum to help caregivers and parentsKenneth Brown of The Clarion Several organizations are coming together in May to provide a forum for people who are looking after children and young adults who have a range of challenges. The Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) and the Sun West School Division are facilitating the forum for parents and caregivers of children and young…

Include people living with frailty in health-care decision-making

Older Canadians say their top priorities are better co-ordinated care systems and more community and home-based supports

Include people living with frailty in health-care decision-makingBy Katherine McGilton University of Toronto and John Muscedere Canadian Frailty Network More than one million Canadians are medically frail – approximately 25 per cent of those are over age 65 and 50 per cent past age 85. The aging of Canadian society and the growing number of older adults living with frailty poses unprecedented societal…

The problem with kindness – and its vast potential

Once we decide to be kind, we find ourselves experiencing belonging. This is what caregivers, paid or unpaid, can teach the rest of society

The problem with kindness – and its vast potentialBy Donna Thomson Contributor Troy Media In 2004, the effects of our son’s disabilities spiralled into serious illness and constant pain. As a caregiver and mother, I was raw and vulnerable – it was the worst of times. I remember saying to doctors and family members, “I need you to be kind to me. I really…

Mental health system ignores those with developmental disabilities

Almost half of those with developmental disabilities are diagnosed with mental illness or addiction and are among the most frequent visitors to ERs

Mental health system ignores those with developmental disabilitiesBy Yona Lunsky University of Toronto and Robert Balogh University of Ontario Institute of Technology With the recent federal commitment to increase mental health funding across Canada, we need to turn our attention toward a group of individuals who are invisible within Canada’s mental health system – a group that has some of the greatest…

Caregivers are Canada’s unsung healthcare heroes

Unpaid, overworked, stressed out and ignored by governments

Caregivers are Canada’s unsung healthcare heroesWe all know one. The person who spends their waking – and working – hours dispensing medicine, providing personal care, doing laundry, preparing meals, arranging schedules and getting their loved one to their medical appointments. They are called caregivers, and their life is no longer their own. So a care aide called in by a…