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Become a Health Advocate!

Canadians and their physicians from coast to coast to coast are speaking up. If health and health care matter to you, become a CMA Health Advocate today! Together, we can put health care back on the agenda.

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What's new

New report reveals demand for elder care set to double in 10 years

As Canada’s baby-boom population ages, the demand for elder care will double by 2031, according to a new report commissioned by the Canadian Medical Association (CMA).
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National survey highlights lack of confidence in long-term care amid pandemic

The National Institute on Ageing (NIA) and the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) released the findings of an online national survey gauging the perspectives of 2,005 Canadians on how the second wave of the pandemic has affected the state of Canada’s LTC systems. The majority of Canadians (86%) surveyed — and 97% of those aged 65 years and older — are concerned about the current state of LTC in Canada.
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Virtual Care in the New Brunswick Election

In a province where it’s estimated more than 44,000 people are without a family doctor, it’s no surprise that health care and virtual care emerged as important issues during the provincial election in New Brunswick.
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Virtual reality: one patient’s story of her virtual care experience

This shift to virtual care, brought on by the pandemic, has highlighted the need for better connectivity across Canada, particularly in rural communities where Internet service is slow or unavailable.
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Help stop the spread

Help curb the spread of Covid-19 by following these simple recommendations.
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The doctor can see you now

COVID-19 is pushing patients like Sarah Fletcher to turn to virtual care. See what her experience has been and learn how you can prepare for an e-consult.
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Help Stop The Spread Poster

In accordance with the Canadian government’s public health guidelines, the CMA has created a one-page infographic on COVID-19 symptoms and how to protect yourself and others.
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CMA Podcast: Answering Common Questions about COVID-19

Including how to stop the spread, where to find up-to-date and reliable information and the timeline for a vaccine
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“It’s about empowering patients to participate”: CMA Health Advocates helps public engage in election‍

As a member of the CMA Patient Voice, part of Chad Dickie's job is to highlight health issues that are important to the public. And now, during an election campaign, those same insights can be used to educate candidates.
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The Future of Virtual Care: Support and Care for Seniors in the Comfort of Home

Just over a decade ago, Dr. Clare Liddy, a family doctor with The Ottawa Hospital Academic Family Health Team, and endocrinologist Dr. Erin Keely collaborated with the Bruyère Research Institute to develop a digital tool called eConsult.
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Waiting to Feel Good Again: The Human Cost of Waiting for Surgery

According to Montreal orthopedic surgeon Dr. John Antoniou, the impact of Canada’s current wait times for joint replacement surgery go far beyond a patient’s need for a new hip or knee.
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Virtual Care in the North

Dr. Norman Smith, an emergency physician, sees the value of virtual care firsthand in his work in Inuvik, the Northwest Territories, where he is responsible for seven small communities.
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Seniors Are Among Canada’s Most Active Volunteers

Volunteering is a way for seniors to retain a sense of self and to continue to cultivate meaning in their lives; Canadian seniors are volunteering in record numbers.
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Remote Monitoring Technology Can Help Seniors Breathe Easier

Breathing conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are a major cause of hospital admissions in Canada.
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The Impact of Patient Advocates and How You Can Make a Difference

For the medical profession to thrive, patients need to have a platform to speak and be heard. Let’s work toward meaningful change — together.
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Health Care Must Be a Priority in the Upcoming Federal Election

The CMA is standing behind Canadians, dedicated to advocating for the positive changes and future planning that you all want to see. You are at the heart of the CMA’s federal election advocacy. Many voices are louder than just one; we are all Health Care Advocates.
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Welcome to CMA Health Advocates

The CMA Health Advocate is the online space for us all to mobilize around issues that matter to patients, caregivers and Canadian doctors. Together, we can make a difference. Together, we can make the health care system better.
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The Aging Crisis, Long Term Care & the Role of the Federal Government

In late June, several of Canada’s leading health care experts gathered for an Economic Club of Canada lunchtime event.
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Federal Government Announces Dementia Strategy

On June 17, the federal government announced Canada’s first national dementia strategy. The guiding principle of this ambitious strategy envisions a future wherein all Canadians living with dementia and their caregivers are supported.
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Geriatric Day Hospitals

Geriatric day hospitals are community-based or hospital outpatient programs intended to prevent unnecessary emergency department visits, hospital admissions and nursing home admissions.
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Quebec City hospital uses mobile clinic to treat seniors at home

Treating senior patients at home, where they feel most comfortable: it’s such a simple idea, but making it happen in Quebec City required both inspiration and follow-through.
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Using technology so that seniors can continue to live at home

What if technology could be used to enable seniors with reduced autonomy to live at home for as long as possible?
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Health Human Resources: Effects and Challenges for Seniors Care

In November 2018, the Canadian Medical Association (CMA), along with other stakeholders, attended a roundtable meeting hosted by the Canadian Association for Long Term Care (CALTC). The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the widespread effects of shortages in the health care workforce (known as health human resources or HHR) on seniors care.
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Six in 10 people believe Canadians will have to delay retirement to afford health care: CMA tells seniors ministers it’s time for federal action

Seniors ministers and parliamentary secretaries from nine provinces, along with their staff, attended a special briefing last week, sponsored by the Canadian Medical Association (CMA), on the looming seniors’ care crisis.
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Multidimensional Home Visit Programs: Helping Seniors Age in Place

For aging in place to be maximally effective, multidimensional preventative home-visit programs (MPHVPs) focusing on multidisciplinary assessment, diagnostics and intervention targeted to keeping seniors at home are essential.
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Quality of service for seniors with reduced autonomy varies widely in Quebec

Due to the lack of beds in hospitals and public residential and long-term care centres (CHSLDs), the Quebec health care system has for several years housed seniors with reduced autonomy in 212 private residences
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Healthy Canadians Grant Spotlight: Nourishing our Seniors at Home

Mount Pleasant Neighbourhood House, a community group that provides services for everyone from seniors to babies in a culturally diverse population, used their $10,000 grant from the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) Foundation to start their Nourishing our Seniors at Home (NOSH) program.
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What if there is something we can do to help our seniors with dementia?

Does someone you love suffer from dementia?
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Technostress among Seniors

Researcher Galit Nimrod surveyed over 500 Internet users aged 60 years and older in Israel to explore how ICT use affects older populations.
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2019 Budget and seniors

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ministers Visit Seniors Communities to Promote 2019 Budget
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Canada's 2019 budget released yesterday

Budget makes important strides to support Canadians, but greater commitment from Federal government needed to improve health, especially for seniors.
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Canadian Seniors Among the Most Generous Charitable Donors

According to a report released by Statistics Canada...
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Becoming an empowered patient: a conversation with Elke Hutton

She talked to us about the lessons she learned caring for her dying husband and the health care challenges facing rural seniors.
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Spotlight: Dr. Clare Liddy, Accelerating Seniors’ Access to Specialists

Dr. Claire Liddy discusses the eConsult model and how it helps patients.
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Input from Patients is Key to Developing a Pan-Canadian Dementia Strategy

Roughly half a million Canadians are currently living with dementia; by 2031, the Alzheimer Society of Canada expects that number to double.
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Marguerite Blais: the woman looking out for Quebec’s caregivers

Quebec is the first province to appoint a minister responsible for caregivers.
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Is your home ready to grow old with you?

The ability for seniors to age in place may have more to do with “place” than “aging.”
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January is Alzheimer’s awareness month

This year we’re Alzheimer’s awareness month is fighting social stigma.
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How do we make our hospitals senior friendly?

Our hospitals were designed as acute care institutions, and not much about their focus has changed in the six decades since Canada’s health care system took shape.
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CMA Patient Voice: Twelve patient members ready to start work to inform CMA advocacy

CMA Patient Voice – a new patient liaison group that will bring insights from patients and their families to the CMA’s work.
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The Results Are In: Fall Prevention Polls

Throughout November, we asked for your feedback on issues related to fall prevention to better understand where our readers were coming from. Here are the results!
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Healthy Canadians Grant Spotlight: St. Ann’s Bay

Thanks to a Healthy Canadians Grant, a community group in rural St. Ann’s Bay, Nova Scotia, is introducing an innovative program targeting isolated seniors in the community.
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Universal Access to Healthcare: Tackling the Unique Callenges of Canadians with Disabilities as Seniors Population Rises

The significant increase in the population of seniors means it is more important than ever to make adaptations to physical environments and transportation so that they are accessible to people with differing levels of independence and who use mobility aids such as walkers, wheelchairs, scooters and canes.
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Healthy Canadians Grant Spotlight: Pilgrims Hospice

Thanks to a Healthy Canadians Grant, Pilgrims Hospice in Edmonton, Alberta, is expanding their popular Adult Respite Day Program with a new initiative focused on providing care for seniors suffering from dementia.
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Healthy Canadians Grant Spotlight: Ocean View Continuing Care

Alzheimer’s disease and dementia rob those affected of their most precious possession — their memories. A new project funded in part by a Healthy Canadians Grant aims to improve memory recall in seniors living with these conditions by allowing them to virtually visit familiar places from their past.
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The State of Caregivers Across the Globe

Supporting caregivers and the vital role they play in home care across Canada was the focus of a conference held recently in Toronto by the Canadian Home Care Association and its affiliate Carers Canada.
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Conference Report – This is Long-Term Care: Disrupting the Norm 2018

Our contributing editor for Fall Prevention Month, Dr. Eoghan O’Shea, attended a long-term care conference on behalf of the CMA from Nov. 14 to 16; he heard presentations relating to the intersection between the different facets of long-term care and fall prevention.
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Canadian Association on Gerontology 2018

Canadian Association on Gerontology 2018 — Making It Matter: Mobilizing Aging Research, Practice & Policy
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Fall Prevention Month: Addressing the Needs of Caregivers

Fall prevention awareness is essential for anyone living with frailty – and those who assist and care for them.
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Ask the right questions about your medications

Patients and caregivers can ask their doctor, nurse or pharmacist for a medication review. Use the 5 Questions to Ask About Your Medications to guide your conversation.
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Not All Meds Get Along

The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) and its’ campaign Demand a Plan are proud to participate in Canadian Patient Safety Week 2018, taking place from October 29th to November 2nd.
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CMA Healthy Canadians Grant Spotlight: Intergenerational Cooking Project

Many seniors in our communities are isolated and don’t have access to nutritious foods.
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For Seniors, Influenza can Pose a Serious Health Threat

For many Canadians, a bout of the flu is an inconvenience; perhaps even representing some downtime to be pampered by a partner and binge on Netflix for a day or two. But for Canada’s 5.9 million seniors, influenza can pose a serious health threat.
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CMA Healthy Canadians Grants Spotlight: Global Walkers

Imagine walking around the world without ever leaving your hometown.
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CMA Healthy Canadians Grant Spotlight: Therapy Dog Program

For many people, animals are an important part of their lives. For seniors, especially those who are socially isolated or living in nursing homes, hospitals or retirement residences, animals can provide comfort and companionship, reduce stress and promote a sense of joy and well-being.
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Female Seniors Making the Most of Golden Years

More and more women are facing the realities of aging alone, but this doesn’t have to be a negative thing.
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Hear! Hear! Hearing Loss in Seniors a Growing Health Challenge

Hearing loss is one of the most prevalent chronic conditions affecting Canadians over the age of 65, and the number of older Canadians with hearing loss is growing fast.
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Better eye health for seniors is good public policy

The reality is that many eye diseases have no symptoms and a verdict of 20/20 vision doesn’t necessarily mean all is well.
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British Columbia Plans Diversity Village to Care for Multicultural Aging Population

In Surrey, British Columbia, plans are underway to build a long-term care home that provides services for members of the “aging and diverse multicultural population” who are unable to care for themselves.
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Intergenerational Home Sharing: Tackles Housing Crisis, Saves Money and Creates Unlikely Friendships

In Toronto, an elderly widow decided it might be a good idea to get a roommate; so, she opened her doors to young strangers — mostly international students.
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RISE on a Mission to Combat Loneliness and Isolation of Older People across Canada

Launched in 2015, the RISE campaign exists to help Canadians of all ages and in all regions gain a greater awareness of the impact of loneliness and isolation on older citizens.
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‘I felt welcomed’: 25 patients attend the CMA’s first-ever Health Summit

Alongside more than 700 physicians and health stakeholders, the patient group took part in two days of presentations and panels related to this year’s theme: innovation in health care.
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Transportation Hotline for Vancouver Seniors

Transportation presents seniors and their caregivers with more than a few challenges.
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Researcher at Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital in Montreal Working to Uncover the Secrets of Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s disease is a devastating, yet enigmatic illness that affects hundreds of thousands of Canadians and even more people worldwide. There is no cure, no way to halt its attack on the brain, and very little that can be done to predict who might acquire the disease and why
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CMA Health Summit Spotlight: Philip Edcumbe

As a student in the MD/Phd program at the University of British Columbia, where he is pursuing a medical degree and has completed his PhD in engineering, Edgcumbe has helped develop many new medical technologies: an augmented-reality display of ultrasound images to help surgeons better “see” patients’ organs, and the pico lantern, a device that maps and projects a patient’s tumor(s) and blood vessels – in 3D – onto their body during surgery.
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Spotlight: The Honourable Filomena Tassi, Canada’s New Minister of Seniors

On July 18, 2018, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau named Hamilton West MP Filomena Tassi as Canada’s new Minister of Seniors. The portfolio dedicated to seniors that Tassi is in charge of is a new, welcome addition to cabinet for long-time seniors’ advocates – including the CMA and Demand a Plan.
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CMA Health Summit Spotlight: Zayna Khayat

After a year in the Netherlands, working as “Innovation Sherpa in Chief” at the REShape Health Innovation Centre, Zayna Khayat returned to Canada in January with a fresh perspective on what that future could look like.
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Fun. Laughter. Love. — Peel Region Long-Term Care Home Helps Seniors with Dementia Live Better

Imagine being trapped. Reliving your darkest moments, over and over. Being isolated. No one to talk to, to break the cycle of darkness. For most of us, it’s a terrifying thought. But for many of the hundreds of thousands of seniors living with dementia, this is the reality.
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New Pilot Project Could Deliver a New Level of Health Care to Seniors

In October 2017, the Perley and Rideau Veterans’ Health Centre (Perley Rideau), together with The Ottawa Hospital (TOH) and the Champlain Local Health Integration Network (LHIN), launched a pilot project to assist elderly patients who no longer require hospital care but are not yet well enough to return home.
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The CMA Takes its Work on Seniors Care to the International Level at the United Nations

On July 24, CMA President Dr. Laurent Marcoux was in New York City to support the creation a new UN convention on the rights of older persons and to advocate for Canada to champion its adoption.
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Canadian Government Responds to HUMA Recommendations for Seniors

On June 20, 2018, the federal government responded to a report by the House of Commons’ Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities (the HUMA Committee) entitled Advancing Inclusion and Quality of Life for Seniors in which they addressed six of the HUMA Committee’s recommendations in the report related to income security, housing, home care, informal caregivers, age-friendly communities and a national seniors care strategy.
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“Retirement” Isn’t What It Used to Be: Many Seniors Want to, Do Keep Working

As life expectancies are much longer now and when people retire they often have several decades of life ahead of them.
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New federal cabinet minister appointed for seniors

Your support led to action!
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Combating Loneliness and Isolation in Seniors with Community Engagement

Your life shouldn’t stop when you become a senior, or when you retire; you should be able to remain actively and meaningfully engaged with the world.
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Aging with a Disability: Flipping the Script of the Healthy Aging Paradigm

Many Canadians age into disability, meaning that they will acquire conditions and limitations as they grow old. But what of seniors who age with a disability?
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Senate Adopts Motion to Implement a National Silver Alert System

Silver Alert operates in a similar way to the AMBER Alert system for missing children but instead broadcasts alerts for missing adults who suffer from Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia.
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Creation of federal minister of seniors moves the dial on the CMA’s call for a national seniors plan

The federal government has created a new cabinet post for seniors, fulfilling one of the key recommendations in the CMA’s seniors care campaign.
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Frailty: It's Not Just About Age

The Canadian Frailty Network (CFN) is Canada’s leading network for seniors living with frailty. But the CFN takes great care to make it clear that frailty and age are not interchangeable terms, discussing how complex the issue is and how proactive efforts can help in caring for the frail population.
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Considering Dedicated Housing for LGBT Seniors

LGBT seniors say going into residential care can feel like going back in the closet. What are ways to address concerns about being out and open in a residential care setting?
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Quebec Government Intoduces 5-Year Action Plan for Seniors

On June 4, 2018, the Quebec government released its second five-year action plan to support active aging in the province.
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Dr. Chris Simpson on “Canada’s Wait Time Problem”

Former CMA president Dr. Chris Simpson publishes article on the wait time problem in Canadian health care; stresses the effect on seniors.
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Pharmacare is back on the national agenda; what it means for the CMA

Pharmacare is once again on the national agenda, with the parliamentary health committee issuing its report on the topic, and the Liberal government launching a federal advisory council on a national pharmacare plan.
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Dan's Law

The Duma family and Dr. Cargill are devoted advocates, raising awareness about necessary access to palliative care for so many patients who cannot wait three months.
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Creating affordable and supportive housing strategies for seniors (podcast)

When it comes to finding supportive housing, affordability can be an enormous challenge for seniors.
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New Alberta Law Set to Empower Seniors Living in Long-term Care Facilities

A new Alberta law titled The Resident and Family Councils Act, in effect as of Apr. 1, 2018, will give seniors living in long-term care and licensed supportive living facilities the right to establish self-governing resident and family councils.
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Quebec Improves Senior Abuse Complaints Process

Quebec is addressing the rise in senior abuse with new legislation that streamlines the process for complainants, with one consolidated committee handling complaints to ensure a quicker and more effective response.
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Quebec Tightens Safety Standards for Most Senior Residences

Quebec government has tightened regulations in residences that house elderly people with significant loss of autonomy, while softening standards in institutions for more autonomous people.
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HUMA Committee releases its recommendations on seniors care in Canada

On Mar. 29, 2018, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities (the HUMA Committee) presented a report titled Advancing Inclusion and Quality of Life for Seniors in the House of Commons.
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New appointments to the National Seniors Council

On Feb. 23, 2018, the face of the National Seniors Council was renewed with the appointment of a new chair and four new members.
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Paramedic Home Care Programs Increasingly Popular

Ontario’s Prescott and Russell area is already set to expand their paramedic home care program in July 2018.
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International report compares seniors care in Canada to that in other developed countries: here are four paradoxical findings

In 2017, The Commonwealth Fund published an international report on seniors health care across 11 developed countries.
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Staff shortages in Quebec’s long-term care residences

Elderly seniors in Quebec’s long-term care (LTC) facilities are growing in number but receiving less care than in the past because of staff shortages caused, in part, by the difficulty in recruiting personnel.
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Could physician assistants be the next great solution for senior care in Canada?

In early 2018, CAPA published a position statement encouraging the provinces to introduce valuable solutions like PAs into its senior care strategies.
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Seizing the opportunities helps create the right road map

A note from CMA President Laurent Marcoux to Nova Scotia Physician. As printed in the March 2018 issue of doctorsNS.
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Successful Hospital-to-Home Program Enhances Need for Home Caregiver Funding

More than 2,000 Canadians with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) who took part in the INSPIRED collaboration have endured 64% fewer hospital readmissions and 53% fewer emergency department visits since the program launched in 2014–15.
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BC Residential Care Survey and Directory: Important Step in Improving Care Quality

British Columbia (BC) recently undertook Canada’s most exhaustive survey of seniors living in long-term care (LTC) facilities, highlighting the province’s commitment to quality of care for this vulnerable sector of the population.
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Funding Request for Seniors’ Quality Home Care in Ontario

Pressure is mounting on governments to boost home care funding, with Home Care Ontario recently calling for $600 million in additional annual funding for home care service providers.
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How Senior Living Advisors Remove the Stress of Finding a Retirement Residence

Finding a retirement residence can be an overwhelming process for seniors and their adult children. As such, more businesses are beginning to offer advisory services and counsel to assist families with this major life transition.
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Cancer survival rates improve for patients between 60 and 79

When the subject is cancer, the news is seldom good. But one key positive fact that can be drawn from a new report by Cancer Care Ontario is that cancer survival has improved for people diagnosed between ages 60 and 79.
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For Winnipeg seniors, it was a year of change

In early 2017, the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) was dealing with a situation common in cities across Canada; 78 of the city’s hospital beds were occupied by people waiting for spaces to open up in nursing homes. This is how they changed that.
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