SENIORCENTRIC WEEK ENDING Sept 4, 2021

Scanning the globe for news by, for and about Senior Citizens

Quotables:

The data shows that additional doses will offer stronger protection for immunocompromised individuals and older Albertans living in supportive living facilities.

chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw
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Seniors in Wetaskiwin take a ride on the wild side

Bike rally at Peace Hills Lodge Aug. 30, 2021 brings out the youth in local seniors.

A bike rally at Peace Hills Lodge on Aug. 30, 2021 had seniors feeling young and having fun.

Organized by local biker Darlene Brubacher and activities coordinator at Peace Hills Lodge Tina Schantz, the bike rally was an opportunity for the seniors to see some bikes up close and personal, enjoy hot dogs, donuts, and coffee on a beautiful late summer night.

About 72 bikes showed up for the rally, an amount that was three times what was expected said Brubacher. She says that prior to the rally, she went to bike nights all over central Alberta handing out flyers for three weeks to gather interest for the event but never expected to have so many people show up – a pleasant surprise in her books.

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Beloved Edmonton elder who dispensed ‘culture as medicine’ dies of COVID-19

An Edmonton elder and knowledge keeper dedicated to keeping Cree traditions alive for the next generation has died from complications of COVID-19.

Relatives of Roxanne Tootoosis say she died alone at home Sunday, less than a week after falling ill with the disease. She was 60.

Tootoosis had called Alberta Health Link on Friday night and was advised by a nurse that she wasn’t sick enough to seek care in hospital, according to her daughter Niska Chyan Napoleon.  

“On Friday, I spoke to her very briefly and her voice was very laboured,” Napoleon said in an interview Tuesday. 

“She told me when she called the [811] hotline that they told her that she didn’t have enough symptoms to go to an emergency.”

‘Medical conditions can change quickly’

Napoleon said the family isn’t planning on filing an official complaint but she wonders if her mother — who had received two doses of COVID-19 vaccine —  would be alive if she had gone to hospital. 

Alberta Health Services said it could not provide details on Tootoosis’ case, citing patient confidentiality.

In a statement to CBC News, AHS extended condolences to the family and encouraged them to file their concerns with the agency’s patient relations team. 

AHS spokesperson Kerry Williamson said the first step of any Health Link assessment is to ensure any emergency or life-threatening symptoms are ruled out.

“Health Link registered nurses provide advice based on information supplied by the patient at the time of the call,” reads the statement.

“As many medical conditions can change quickly, Health Link nurses always insist a patient call back if any of the symptoms change, so they may be reassessed, or that they immediately call 911.” 

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‘Absolute fear and panic’: CERB clawbacks affecting quality of life for N.W.T. seniors

‘I knew I’d have to pay tax on [CERB] … but I never thought about how it would affect my pension’

George Lessard says he felt “absolute fear and panic” when he found out his federal benefits were being clawed back.

In July, Lessard got a letter from the federal government stating that he’s no longer eligible for the guaranteed income supplement (GIS), which is an additional payment for low-income seniors, because of his CERB-induced income boost. 

“Wow, I didn’t know that. Nobody told me that. What can I do?” he said. “I knew I’d have to pay tax on [CERB] … but I never thought about how it would affect my pension.” 

Lessard decided to apply for the Canada emergency response benefit (CERB) when the pandemic began because he said he qualified for it.

The 69-year-old self-proclaimed independent media artist, who lived in Yellowknife at the time, received $14,000 in CERB payments to supplement his income, which mostly came from Old Age Security (OAS), the guaranteed income supplement (GIS) and occasional contract work and royalties.

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An ageing director finds a young crew to realise his dream

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Seniors go back to school with prom night at Bishops Gardens

A seniors home in a converted high school gave residents a night to remember

You’ve heard of a senior prom, but how about a seniors prom?

It had all the trappings of a typical prom night; fancy dresses, suits and ties, corsages, a dance floor with a live band. But instead of fresh-faced teenagers bopping in a gym, this prom had folks in their 70s and 80s partying like they were 17 or 18. 

Bishops Gardens is a seniors living facility in St. John’s, built on the site of a former high school, Bishops College. Resident Effie Shephard remarked that there were scores of proms held at this location over the years.

“This is the first time that they’re all seniors! Can you imagine?” she said. 

As she gazed around the room at her fellow residents smiling, dancing, and looking their best, Shephard explained that prom night was truly special for folks here.

“I think it means a lot, because it means that we’re still up and moving! And there’s a lot to be said for that.”

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