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Sedentary living puts many older Canadians at risk

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Call it one of life’s greatest ironies. After six or seven decades of early mornings, physical labour, child care and all the other elements of a full life, haven’t you earned some down time? It makes sense to just put your feet up and enjoy retirement.

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The Standing Senate Committee on National Finance says a National seniors strategy will help Canada manage its aging population

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More Canadians are over the age of 65 than under 14 — a profound demographic change that is creating significant challenges for the country’s finances and affecting Canada’s economy, the Senate Committee on National Finance said in a report.

To counter these effects, the committee is urging the federal government to adopt a national seniors strategy to control the rising costs associated with an aging population while ensuring elderly Canadians get the care they need. It’s one of four recommendations the committee included in its report, Getting Ready: For a New Generation of Active Seniors.

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The goal is seniors who are healthy, active and living in the community

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Before being admitted to the hospital with pneumonia, John was able to walk around the block every day. The 88-year-old lives at home, where he is cared for by his wife with support from their local Community Care Access Centre, despite suffering from dementia and an increasing lack of mobility. For a senior like John, the ideal outcome is excellent hospital care, followed by discharge and after-care that allow him to get home and back to his exercise routine as quickly as possible.

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Canada’s Indigenous people face many instances of inequity, but the more than 40,000 seniors among them often experience particular challenges.

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In many instances, they fall into the cracks between federal and provincial/territorial jurisdiction and face bureaucratic slowdowns. Critics say that Aboriginal, Métis and Inuit Canadians over age 65 are paying for the lack of collaborative problem-solving between government departments and agencies. They point to poor communication and coordination at every level, including provincial/territorial ministries, the federal government and Indigenous communities. For example, some hospitals have sent frail patients home to their communities without checking if there are appropriate support services because historically Indigenous peoples have been viewed as a federal responsibility.

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Prioritize the creation of alternatives to acute hospital care for Canada’s seniors

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Canadian seniors would be healthier, and the health care system more effective, if an affordable, supportive housing strategy was in place throughout the country. That concept was selected as the top priority by a majority of delegates at the National Health Leadership Conference, held in Vancouver June 12–13.

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Loneliness

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Perhaps no two lines have ever captured the aging process better than the opening of Leonard Cohen’s “Tower of Song”:

Well, my friends are gone and my hair is grey, 

I ache in the places where I used to play.

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Conservative Party leadership candidates and the future of health care

The Conservative Party of Canada members will elect a new leader on May 27. Who are the leadership candidates focused on Canada’s health and seniors care priorities? Check out the graph below.

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It all adds up, a new study suggests

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It might be the fee for 90 minutes of parking at the doctor’s office or the occasional coffee and a muffin with Mom at Tim Hortons. It might just be the extra gas to take the kids to see Grandma at her retirement home on the weekend. Whether the expense is small or large, the trend remains clear: about two million Canadians are spending money to take care of their aging parents.

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MP Serré’s M-106 passes in the House of Commons

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MP Serré’s M-106 passes in the House of Commons—study on developing a National Seniors Strategy to be undertaken by Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development. 


Serré looks forward to important study aimed toward improving quality of life for seniors, providing better support for caregivers

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New national innovation hub launched to support healthy aging

The AGE-WELL Network of Centres of Excellence (NCE) and the New Brunswick Health Research Foundation (NBHRF) are pleased to announce the launch of a national innovation hub to advance policies, practices and services in the fast-evolving field of technology and aging.

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