Covid-19 pokes the final hole in leaky long-term care boat

We cannot blame COVID-19 alone for the current LTC crisis, writes Shawn Whatley

Covid-19 pokes the final hole in leaky long-term care boatNursing homes struggled long before the COVID-19 pandemic arrived in Canada. Now, during the second wave, many front-line clinicians say our long-term care (LTC) system has all but collapsed. In the pre-COVID era, patients waited a median of 159 days to get a bed in Ontario, with some areas at 263 days. Thus, it was…

Website provides resources, support for LGBTQ2+ cancer patients

U of A faculty educator and two collaborators saw a need and worked to create a supportive space

Website provides resources, support for LGBTQ2+ cancer patientsCancer doesn’t discriminate, but the health-care system sometimes does. There’s a marked gap in information when it comes to resources and peer-support services tailored to LGBTQ2+ people. That need in the system is what prompted a University of Alberta faculty educator and collaborators to launch a new website, called Queering Cancer, aimed at closing the…

Many questions will linger post-pandemic

Many questions will linger post-pandemicPandemics have a way of changing the world. The Plague of Justinian hit the Mediterranean area in the 500s, not only killing millions but crucially weakening the Byzantine Empire and helping ruin its plans to reconquer western Europe from the barbarians. The Black Death of the 1300s wiped out over 100 million people in Europe…

Pandemic exposes flaws in our health-care system

Competition and entrepreneurship allow medicare to budget wisely and patients to get the attention they deserve

Pandemic exposes flaws in our health-care systemOnce again, the U.S. presidential election elevated Canadian health care – colloquially known as medicare – as a role model. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed its many shortfalls and triggered a public debate over allowing private alternatives. A chief concern – though not the only one – among reform advocates is waiting times for…

Health-care wait times in Canada hit record high in 2020

Patients in Canada face the longest wait time for elective surgery on record

Health-care wait times in Canada hit record high in 2020By Bacchus Barua and Mackenzie Moir The Fraser Institute As we continue our battle against COVID-19, another separate health-care crisis rages on. Wait times. Patients in Canada face the longest wait time for elective surgery on record – 22.6 weeks (between referral from a family doctor to receipt of medically necessary treatment). Of course, the…

Women’s and gender studies ideal training for med school: students

Three U of A medical students may have different backgrounds and interests, but they share a passion for reducing inequities in health – and in the health system

Women’s and gender studies ideal training for med school: studentsThe University of Alberta’s Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry this fall welcomed three students trained in women’s and gender studies (WGS), which they say has given them a unique perspective on their chosen profession. All three say gender studies have made them acutely aware of the social determinants of health – especially for vulnerable populations…

Federal standards, investment urged to fix long-term care system

Immediate improvements for nursing home workforce needed before next crisis hits, says U of A researcher

Federal standards, investment urged to fix long-term care systemCanada needs to take immediate actions to ensure nursing homes are ready for a possible second wave of COVID-19, according to the chair of an expert working group charged with solving Canada’s long-term care collapse. “If we do nothing else, in the short and longer term, the workforce has to be addressed,” said Carole Estabrooks,…

Muscular dystrophy treatment shows promise in cells, animals

University of Alberta-led team develops synthetic molecule that stops production of toxic muscle-killing protein

Muscular dystrophy treatment shows promise in cells, animalsResearchers have designed a potential new treatment for one of the most common forms of muscular dystrophy, according to a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Toshifumi Yokota, professor of medical genetics at the University of Alberta, led a team from Canada and the U.S. to create and test…

Your mother was right – wash your hands

While we wait for science to put a stop to COVID-19, we can all do our part in the simplest of ways

Your mother was right – wash your handsModern medicine has at its disposal a vast array of technologies that can be used to identify, track and predict the risk and potential impact of emerging infectious diseases. Bioassays, genome sequencing and molecular technology can identify a novel pathogen. Computer modelling (in real-time) can provide us with an instant status report showing how much…

How robots could help injured workers recover

Training robots to guide people through tasks could improve return-to-work evaluations and treatment: U of A researchers

How robots could help injured workers recoverTraining robots to guide injured workers through simulated tasks could make return-to-work evaluations and treatment programs more effective and accessible, according to researchers at the University of Alberta. In a review of scientific literature on efforts to use robotics for occupational rehabilitation, the researchers reported that robots with machine learning capabilities have the potential to…
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