When a caregiver becomes a care receiver

Lesson learned: We need to apply child-friendly practices to adult care because when you are ill or injured, you feel like a child again

When a caregiver becomes a care receiverPaid or unpaid, caregivers are never supposed to get sick, right? But sometimes they do. Sue Robins owns a health-care communications company and is the mother of a young man with Down syndrome. Robins used to blog about caring for her son and his encounters with the health-care system. But that all changed the day she received…

Facing death with an attitude that’s full of life

Mike Sloan’s positive, upbeat tone and zest for life in the face of adversity has truly been inspiring

Facing death with an attitude that’s full of life“Death is not the opposite of life but an innate part of it,” Haruki Murakami wrote in his acclaimed novel Norwegian Wood. “By living our lives, we nurture death.” This is rational. Nevertheless, death isn’t something we enjoy spending every waking moment thinking about. That’s especially true when we’re still at the point in our…

Tackling ovarian cancer head-on

Margot Micallef talks about the The Lady Ball Gala, and what we can all do to support women and battle ovarian cancer

Tackling ovarian cancer head-onMargot Micallef is CEO of Oliver Capital Partners and Gabriella's Kitchen. What does it mean to you being the honorary chair of The Lady Ball Gala coming up? Micallef: I am honoured to be involved in this year’s Lady Ball Gala benefiting Ovarian Cancer Canada. I have yet to meet someone who has not been…

Cellphone industry continues to control the safety message

In the U.S., the industry has influenced science, regulators, public perception and government policy

Cellphone industry continues to control the safety messageWhen industry wants science to say something, how does it do it? Last year, The Nation showed us how in its special investigation, How Big Wireless Made Us Think That Cell Phones Are Safe. In 1993, a lawsuit alleged that cellphones caused a woman’s terminal brain cancer. As wireless stocks headed downward, the industry unleashed…

New breast screening guidelines fail Canadian women

Outdated material used by the task force could result in the deaths of far too many women. A new set of guidelines must be drawn up

New breast screening guidelines fail Canadian womenChanges to breast cancer screening guidelines have been big news since the release of the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care’s updated guidelines in December. Women aged 50 to 74 are now recommended to undergo screening mammography every two to three years, while women 40 to 49 are advised not to undergo screening and…

National pharmacare can hurt patients more than it helps

Will likely result in reduced access to new drugs, and delay research and development

National pharmacare can hurt patients more than it helpsThe federal government’s pharmacare advisory council released a report last week outlining the “foundational” elements of a national plan. And Tuesday’s federal budget may include more details. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of misinformation and misunderstanding regarding core aspects of the pharmacare debate. Given that proponents in Canada often cite government-funded pharmacare programs in the United…

Marijuana’s medical attributes vastly overstated

Pot’s benefits have been overstated by political advocates and scientists, whose bias may have tainted research results

Marijuana’s medical attributes vastly overstatedMarijuana users want society to believe the very thing they’ve told themselves for years – that the highs of marijuana far outweigh its lows when it comes to health and the effect on the masses. Informed minds that remain sober and less tainted by personal bias realize that’s probably not the case. Cannabis is demonstrably…

Broadening health care’s perspective on pain

We don’t take pain into account when assessing where to invest health sector research and delivery dollars. That needs to change

Broadening health care’s perspective on painThe prestigious Canadian Academy of Health Sciences’ annual meeting recently in Vancouver focused on chronic pain and, of course, the current catastrophe of opioid deaths was discussed. But most of the discussion was broader: What are the biological mechanisms underlying chronic pain? What are the experiences of those suffering from chronic pain? How could Canada’s…

Monsanto lawsuit ruling leaves Bayer in need of more Aspirin

Monsanto, now a division of Bayer, ordered to pay $289M to a single plaintiff. Even if Monsanto’s brands no longer exist, its legacy remains

Monsanto lawsuit ruling leaves Bayer in need of more AspirinIn California, where lawsuits can be found more easily than drinking water, German chemical giant Bayer has been dealt a huge legal blow. Monsanto, now a division of Bayer, was ordered to pay a whopping US$289 million in damages to a gardener suffering from cancer, allegedly from using Monsanto products. Given that more than 5,000 such…