I’ve been around Alzheimer’s all of my adult life. When I was 18, my grandmother was diagnosed with the disease. She died when I was 25. My grandfather was diagnosed when I was 28. He was gone by the time I was 40. My mother had already been diagnosed by then, and was gone by the time I was 53. It was then that I began my mission to create Alzlive, a media platform specifically designed for the unpaid family caregivers of people living with dementia.
Two years ago I found myself at a breakfast meeting with the head of gerontology at one of the larger hospitals in Toronto.
I was telling him about the idea behind the Alzlive initiative. At some point during the discussion, the issue of navigating the health-care system came up. He even mentioned how one of his associates had struggled with our health-care system as she was dealing with two aging parents.
If a health-care insider is having a tough time, imagine how the rest of us might feel!
As wonderful as our universal system is, it’s not perfect. Needs are growing as budgets are shrinking. More and more, the average citizen is becoming their own advocate in order to ensure that they, or their friends and family members, receive adequate care. It’s up to each of us to gain control because this is, in many cases, a matter of life and death.
When I told them about my breakfast meeting, the team at Alzlive decided to develop an eight-part series covering issues related to dealing with Alzheimer’s and other dementias. Here’s our message: figure out what questions to ask, ask them, and get answers as quickly as possible.
The series is also accompanied by videos. Watch two journalists tell their story of how they unearthed answers to many health-care questions. Available on our YouTube channel, the videos are divided into smaller so that you can find answers to specific questions, in fact 40 questions regarding the health-care system in Canada!
The series doesn’t have all the answers, but it will give you a good start on your journey.
We sincerely hope this helps.
All the best,
Founder and publisher of Alzlive