Advice about the advice that’s given to family caregivers

August 10, 2010
Hosted by Dr. Gordon Atherley

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Episode Description

Dr Dave Travland, a clinical psychologist, leads the Caregiver Survival Institute. Bruce Ritchie is Moderator & CEO of the Fetal Alcohol Disorders Society. They both have powerful experience as family caregivers especially in the care of children with serious challenges. In their work, they support family caregivers facing a wide range of challenges. They discuss the challenges they personally experienced. They describe how their own experiences guide them in providing advice. They talk about advice that’s most useful to family caregivers, and suggest ways for family caregivers to recognize useful advice. They explain why family caregivers who have travelled the caregiving road are so often the best sources of advice for other family caregivers. They analyze the characteristics that help professionals like physicians and psychologists to be most helpful to family caregivers. And they encourage family caregivers to ask the professionals about their own family caregiving experience.

Family Caregivers Unite!

Family Caregivers Unite!

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Family caregivers are the people who provide care to partners, parents, children, brothers, sisters, cousins, friends, neighbors and even co-workers. They are the people who provide care when everyone else has gone home. They are the people who organize the functioning of the home for the person with special needs, and for the family as a whole. They are the coordinators of care, the managers of appointments, the preventers of loneliness, and the makers of decisions even to the point of Power of Attorney. And they are so often people who themselves are burdened with their own health challenges and who may be in only marginally better health than the persons to whom they are providing family caregiving.

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Dr. Gordon Atherley

Dr. Gordon Atherley

Dr Gordon Atherley holds the British equivalent of the Canadian PhD and MD degrees, and LLD, Honoris Causa, from Canada’s Simon Fraser University. His awards include Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, UK. His medical specialties are occupational medicine and public health.
As first President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, the Canadian equivalent of the US National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, he led the creation of Canada’s electronic information service in occupational health and safety, now used in more than 40 countries.
In academia, he held senior, tenured, full-time positions, including departmental chair, in university faculties of physics, engineering, and medicine. He is the author of a textbook and numerous articles and publications.

Since retiring from medical practice, he’s built up Greyhead Associates, which critically researches the safety, effectiveness and fairness of health services for persons with special needs.
Through Virtual Care International, a company of which he’s President, he’s involved in providing sensible technology to family caregivers to help them with their responsibilities, workloads, and concerns.
Now an activist, he urges family caregivers to unite because, more and more, it’s not just their families who depend on them, it’s also the healthcare system as a whole, as it struggles to meet more and more needs of more and more people.

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