June 2019

The Aging Crisis, Long Term Care & the Role of the Federal Government

11:30am-1:30pm | The Westin - 11 Colonel By Dr, Ottawa

Long-term care homes provide housing – along with physical, medical, social, spiritual, and emotional support – to more than 150,000 seniors across Canada. As Canadian’s live longer and can live at home longer, seniors who arrive at long-term care homes do so with more health issues and more complex conditions. The prevalence of chronic conditions and cognitive impairment among residents has increased dramatically over the last decade. In 2016/17, 62% of residents living in long-term care were living with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia. Canada’s front-line care workers support people at this stage of their life, including support with everyday activities such as getting dressed, getting in and out of bed, eating and using the bathroom. Unfortunately, to date, long-term care continues to be largely ignored by federal policy makers. While the Federal Government has undertaken many initiatives to support seniors, none of these initiatives support seniors living in long-term care. With an aging crisis upon us – as the number of Canadians aged 65 and older will rise by 25%, and those aged 80 and older will double between now and 2036 – this begs the question: what is the role of the Federal Government in tackling the aging crisis and addressing the long-term care needs of Canadian seniors?

- Lunch will be served -
Member price:
Individual seat: $89 +HST
Table (seats 10): $800 +HST
Regular price:
Individual seat: $110 +HST
Table (seats 10): $990 +HST
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*The views expressed on the Economic Club platform are not that of the Economic Club or its affiliates but of the speakers alone and the organizations they represent*

The Aging Crisis, Long Term Care & the Role of the Federal Government

Daniel Fontaine

Canadian Association for Long-Term Care

Daniel Fontaine

Daniel has an extensive background working in the non-profit and private sectors, as well as government. He has served on a number of boards including as a Director for Douglas College and on the BC College of Psychologists from 2004-2010. He currently serves on the Board of SafeCare BC, and was appointed in 2018 as a member of the Ministerial Advisory Board on Dementia.

A graduate of the University of Manitoba in political science, Daniel went on to become one of B.C.’s most sought after political advisors and campaign organizers, working closely with provincial Cabinet ministers, a Vancouver mayor as chief of staff, and a leading Canadian academic.

In 2012, Daniel was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for public service. He and his wife Andrea and their son reside in the historic Queen’s Park neighbourhood where Daniel volunteers for the local youth hockey league.

Dr. Gigi Osler

Canadian Medical Association

Dr. Gigi Osler

Dr. Osler has practised in Winnipeg, Manitoba, since 1998. She graduated from medical school at the University of Manitoba in 1992 and completed a rotating internship at the Health Sciences Centre and St. Boniface General Hospital. She began studying otolaryngology-head and neck surgery at the University of Manitoba in 1993. Dr. Osler graduated from residency in 1997, followed by a rhinology fellowship at St. Paul's Hospital in Vancouver.

She leads the section of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery at St. Boniface Hospital and is an assistant professor with the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery at the University of Manitoba. She also teaches medical students and residents at St. Boniface Hospital.

Dr. Osler is actively involved with Canadians Helping Kids in Vietnam, volunteering to be part of its medical mission to Long Xuyen, Vietnam in 2011. That mission aimed to educate Vietnamese doctors and nurses, deliver donated medical equipment and supplies, and provide bicycles to schoolchildren.

For the last several years, Dr. Osler has volunteered to help train surgeons in Africa. This work is part of a collaborative effort to enhance the educational infrastructure of Mbarara University of Science and Technology’s ENT department by expanding clinical capacity to improve the quality of local care.

A recognized advocate for physician health, Dr. Osler co-chaired the 2015 Canadian Conference on Physician Health and chaired the Physician Health and Wellness Committee for Doctors Manitoba. In 2017, Doctors Manitoba awarded her its Health or Safety Promotion Award for her efforts to develop and implement programs that support doctors’ health and wellbeing.

Dr. Samir K. Sinha MD, DPhil, FRCPC, AGSF

Director of Geriatrics
Sinai Health System & the University Health Network

Dr. Samir K. Sinha MD, DPhil, FRCPC, AGSF

Dr. Samir Sinha is a passionate and respected advocate for the needs of older adults. Dr. Sinha currently serves as the Director of Geriatrics of the Sinai Health System and the University Health Network in Toronto and the Peter and Shelagh Godsoe Chair in Geriatrics at Mount Sinai Hospital. He is also an Associate Professor in the Departments of Medicine, Family and Community Medicine, and the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

A Rhodes Scholar, after completing his undergraduate medical studies at the University of Western Ontario, he obtained a Masters in Medical History and a Doctorate in Sociology at the University of Oxford’s Institute of Ageing. He has pursued his postgraduate training in Internal Medicine at the University of Toronto and in Geriatrics at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
Dr. Sinha's breadth of international training and expertise in health policy and the delivery of services related to the care of the elderly have made him a highly regarded expert in the care of older adults. In 2012 he was appointed by the Government of Ontario to serve as the expert lead of Ontario's Seniors Strategy and he is now working on the development of a National Seniors Strategy.

In 2014, Canada’s Maclean’s Magazine proclaimed him to be one of Canada’s 50 most influential people and its most compelling voice for the elderly.
Beyond Canada, Dr. Sinha is a Fellow of the American Geriatrics Society and a member of the American Red Cross Scientific Advisory Council. Dr. Sinha has further consulted and advised hospitals and health authorities in Britain, China, Iceland, Singapore, St. Kitts and Nevis and the United States on the implementation and administration of unique, integrated and innovative models of geriatric care that reduce disease burden, improve access and capacity and ultimately promote health.

Michael Nicin

Executive Director, National Institute on Ageing
Ryerson University

Michael Nicin

Michael Nicin is the Executive Director of the National Institute on Ageing at Ryerson University. Michael served as Chief of Staff and Senior Policy Advisor to the Ontario Minister of Seniors Affairs, leading the design and launch of the $155 million provincial Seniors Strategy - the first government funded seniors strategy in Canada. He also served as the Senior Policy Advisor to the Ontario Minister of Children and Youth Services, where he oversaw the 2017 design and launch of the $500 million Ontario Autism Program. Prior to this he was the Director of Policy and Strategic Planning for CARP, a 300,000 member based advocacy organization for older Canadians.

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