Multiple Sclerosis, Family Conversations about Care

May 20, 2013
Hosted by Dr. Gordon Atherley

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Episode Description

Ann Stewart is chapter manager of the www.mssociety.ca/en, Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada , Lethbridge & District Chapter. Norine Thomason has been caregiver to her husband Bill since he was diagnosed in 1969 with multiple sclerosis. They share their personal stories and explain the work of the MS Society. They highlight the most challenging of the challenges to quality of life for people living with MS, their family caregivers, and their families. They discuss the support most needed by people living with MS and their family caregivers to help them overcome the challenges to their quality of life. They share their advice about family conversations for people living with MS and their family caregivers. They say what they intend to do and would like to see done by others to so people living with MS and their family caregivers get the help they most need in overcoming the challenges created by MS. They share their messages for family caregivers and their family members.

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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