Dr. Samir Sinha is the Director of Health Policy Research and Co-Chair of the NIA. He is a passionate and respected advocate for the needs of older adults. He currently serves as the Director of Geriatrics at Sinai Health System and the University Health Network. He is a Rhodes scholar, with great breadth of international training and expertise in health policy and the delivery of services related to the care of the elderly. In 2012 he was appointed by the Government of Ontario to serve as the expert lead of Ontario’s Seniors Strategy. He has further consulted and advised hospitals and health authorities in Britain, Canada, Iceland, the United States and China. In 2014, Toronto Life named him one of Toronto’s Best Doctors while Maclean’s proclaimed him to be one of Canada’s 50 most influential people and its most compelling voice for the elderly.
Creating a Canadian Decade of Healthy Ageing
Bonnie-Jeanne MacDonald, PhD FCIA FSA, is the Director of Financial Security Research at the National Institute on Ageing (NIA), Ryerson University (Toronto). She is also a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries, a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries, and the resident scholar at Eckler Ltd. Her research focuses on the financial and health aspects of Canada’s ageing population. Bringing together leading industry experts and building on academic best practices coupled with innovative ideas, her work aims to improve retirement financial security for Canadians through practical insights, industry innovations and government solutions.
Michael Nicin served as Chief of Staff and Senior Policy Advisor to the Ontario Minister of Seniors Affairs, leading the design and launch of the $155 million provincial seniors strategy – the first government led seniors strategy in Canada. He also served as the Senior Policy Advisor to the Ontario Minister of Children and Youth Services, where he oversaw the design and launch of the $500 million Ontario Autism Program. Prior to this he also served as the Director of Policy and Strategic Planning for CARP, a 300,000 member based advocacy organization for older Canadians.
Ashley Flanagan (she/her) completed her PhD in Ageing, Health, and Wellbeing at the University of Waterloo. She brings extensive expertise in the areas of socio-cultural gerontological and leisure perspectives, social justice and diversity, qualitative research methodologies, and social theory. Specifically, Ashley’s research focuses on 2SLGBTQIA+ ageing and old age with the goal of advancing comprehensive health and wellness policy, programs, and services for older adults with diverse gender and sexual identities. Ashley is also a member of the Ontario Centre for Learning, Research and Innovation’s (CLRI) Supporting Diversity & Inclusion in Long-Term Care Advisory Group.
Samir Sinha, National Institute on Ageing, Canada
Bonnie-Jeanne MacDonald, Michael Nicin and Ashley Flanagan, National Institute on Ageing, Canada
Canada’s ageing population will peak in 2031, just one decade from now. Over the next ten years, it is imperative to both critically and optimistically think and take action to help make Canada the best place to grow up and grow old.
The National Institute on Ageing, a public policy and research centre based at Ryerson University, has taken key steps since its inception to create evidence-driven ideas for action to ignite policymakers, organizations, health care providers, families and older Canadians to work together to create meaningful change for the lives of older adults.
The following symposium will feature four of the NIA’s leading experts to present and discuss recent NIA research and guidance in the following topic areas:
- The Future of Long-Term Care
NIA experts will discuss their key policy recommendations for long-term care services across Canada that would enable older adults to be best supported to age with greater quality of life, better health outcomes, and dignity through appropriate models of care, support and best practices. The NIA will also explore our recent research and guidance on the future costs of long-term care and Dr. Samir Sinha’s involvement in the development of National Long-term Care Standards.
- Inclusive Approaches to Diversity in Later Life
Diversity is one of Canada’s greatest assets. Given that diversity is both visible and invisible, equitable support across all groups, including older adults who are far too often homogenized in national conversations and priorities, must be ensured. The NIA will discuss our research on the integration, optimization and promotion of inclusive approaches to supporting diverse populations living with dementia, as well as the need for enhanced socio-demographic data collection in long-term care.
- Financial Solutions in Later Life
Older people remain one of the most financially vulnerable Canadian populations, and the rate of older adults considered as living “in low income” circumstances is rising. The NIA will discuss our research surrounding what financial solutions are available, yet not well known, among older Canadians.