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Whether it's young children growing up and needing your time for activities and school or aging parents needing extra attention, the generation caught in the middle of this is being spread thin. The sandwich generation has become the norm for Canadians, bringing packed schedules and extreme stress.
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Our population is now the oldest it ever has been, with more people currently aged 65 and older than there are children under the age of 15. As with any significant demographic shift, this trend has significant implications for society at large, impacting health care, finance policy, infrastructure, family relationships, and legal issues.
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National Seniors Day happened in Canada on Saturday and we didn't do anything about it. Countless moments and opportunities squandered to say, "Wait, I should call my grandparents," or "I should go to that senior's home and say hello to some residents," or even say some kind words to a senior on the street. We didn't do any of it. Did you?
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The health workforce is the "elephant in the room" at health policy tables -- a large, pervasive issue that unfortunately often goes unaddressed. The health workforce is a pillar of the health system and so like the foundation of our homes, it can sometimes go unnoticed. But if we plan on reforming services (i.e., renovating our home), we are going to have to attend to whether the health workforce foundation can support the changes.
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As the Canadian population continues to age, there is a need to revisit conventional thinking regarding the provision of health care services for seniors to ensure that the system is sustainable for all Canadians. There are a number of misperceptions in current thinking.
It's a lot to take on, and it's a difficult workload to maintain. Ultimately the caregiver has to make sacrifices in some area of their life, and it's usually their own emotional, physical or mental well-being that suffers the consequences. Sound familiar? Probably.
Call your parents, grandparents, great-grandparents and all your great aunts and uncles too.
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It is challenging for many people to accept a loss of control as their independence gradually declines. Based on this loss of control, many become anxious, demanding, or resistant. This creates a new set of challenges for the caregiver.
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