What’s New

Improving the Quality of Life and Care of Persons Living with Dementia and their Caregivers: CAHS National Dementia Care Assessment

A Canadian Academy of Health Sciences expert panel on dementia released their report on January 16 2019 outlining priorities for a national dementia strategy.

The assessment was conducted by a six-member panel of distinguished multidisciplinary experts chaired by Dr. Howard Bergman, MD, FCFP, FRCPC, FCAHS, Chair of the Department of Family Medicine at McGill University. The Public Health Agency of Canada charged the panel with providing an evidence-informed and authoritative assessment on the state of dementia knowledge to help advance and inform the development of a National Dementia Strategy.

The Assessment found that the quality of life of persons living with dementia and their caregivers, along with access to health and social care, can be improved across all stages of dementia. Based on the best evidence and emerging best practices, the Assessment recommends that the development of a national strategy on dementia consider the following seven priorities:

  1. Engaging persons living with dementia
  2. Prevention, awareness and living well with dementia
  3. Improving health and social care for persons living with dementia
  4. Education and support for caregivers
  5. Building and supporting the health and social care workforce
  6. Creating and translating knowledge on dementia
  7. Supporting research and innovation in all stages of dementia

The Assessment emphasizes the importance of a national strategy for ensuring the sustainability of Canada’s health and social care system in face of the increasing number of people living with dementia. It highlights the importance of adopting healthy lifestyles that might prevent or delay dementia along with the need to overcome stigma and fear of living with dementia and how it is possible to live well with dementia.

Improved quality and access to care for those living with dementia and improved supports to caregivers were stressed as well as the need to invest in dementia research and innovation across all areas of dementia – biomedical, clinical as well as research related to health systems, health services and population health.

The full report can be accessed here


In a Familiar Voice: The Dominant Role of Women in Shaping Canadian Policy on Medical Assistance in Dying

Dr. Daryl Pullman, Professor of Medical Ethics at Memorial University of Newfoundland, gave a lecture on the subject of medical assistance in dying, and the role of women in shaping Canadian policy in this area.

A video recording of Dr. Daryl Pullman’s lecture is available here


Research Grant

Congratulations to Alison Phinney, Deborah O’Connor, Jim Mann, Habib Chaudhury, Elaine Weirsma, and Heather Cowie on receiving a CIHR grant (2018-2022) for their project, “Putting Social Citizenship into Practice: Reducing Stigma and Promoting Social Inclusion of People with Dementia”!

The purpose of this four-year study is to address social problems of stigma and exclusion experienced by people living with dementia. This study will engage a participatory action group of people with dementia to work in collaboration with academic researchers and community partners to develop a set of guidelines and principles for supporting social citizenship in community settings.