Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Majority of Canadians feel financially unprepared for retirement

More than 1 in 3 aged 35-54 don't have an RSP;
68% of Canadians have no financial plan in place to meet retirement goals

TORONTO, January 23, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - A new survey from ING DIRECT reveals many Canadians are not taking the necessary steps to achieve financial peace of mind in retirement. According to the Angus Reid study commissioned by the bank, more than half of Canadians (58 per cent) don't feel financially prepared for retirement and only a third (33 per cent) actually have a plan in place to meet their retirement goals.

For 31 per cent of survey respondents, retirement is not even on their radar when thinking about personal finances. That number jumps to 39 per cent for those aged 25-34 and 56 per cent for younger Canadians aged 18-24.

Currently, a top financial priority for most Canadians is to pay off credit card debt or lines of credit (41 per cent). For respondents aged 25-34 and 35-54, with children under 18 living at home, saving for retirement falls to the bottom of the priority list (21 and 30 per cent), behind paying off their mortgage (38 and 42 per cent) and saving for their children's education (41 and 40 per cent).

"Saving for retirement can't be an afterthought," said Peter Aceto, president and CEO, ING DIRECT Canada. "Despite the amount of debt people are carrying and what we keep hearing in the news, saving is still possible. Understanding the importance of starting early, even if it means starting small, has a huge influence on the ability to meet your financial goals. Canadians should also look at the value they're getting from their existing financial products and have ongoing conversations about money with friends, family and on social networks, which can play a big role in being better informed about personal finances."

Savers are out there

The survey also found that of those who have a RSP, 21 per cent are contributing between $1001-$2500 each year, while 16 per cent are putting away between $501-$1000. Forty-three per cent plan to contribute the same in 2012 as last year while 27 per cent are planning to contribute more.

The top five financial product categories where Canadians have invested their RSPs or retirement funds include mutual funds (57 per cent), Tax Free Savings Account (30 per cent), GICs (25 per cent), savings accounts (20 per cent) and individual stocks (20 per cent).

If they had an extra $50 each month, Canadians would spend it as follows:

...33 per cent would pay off debt (mortgage, credit card, student loans etc.)
...25 per cent would put it towards a savings account (RSP, TFSA etc.)
...16 per cent would put it in an emergency fund
...15 per cent would pay bills

"What if putting $50 into a savings account each month was like a mandatory bill you had to pay? Equate it to paying a half per cent more on your mortgage, but instead you're putting that half per cent into a savings account, like an RSP, that is also giving you interest," said Aceto. "Saving $50 a month, at a 2.5% interest rate compounded over 30 years would provide more than $25,000 in savings*. If you can't find $50 to contribute, start by taking a look at the fees you pay for your financial products. In many cases, this expense can be eliminated and redirected to savings."

He added, "A saving habit takes discipline but once you start it's very easy to maintain, especially with an automatic savings plan. Our clients are always happily surprised at how much they've built in savings even with small monthly contributions. It's exciting to see your savings grow and feel in control of your financial well being."

How much will you need?

Not having enough income to sustain a good quality of life during retirement is a top concern for half of Canadians (49 per cent). While the amount of income required during retirement varies from person to person, depending on the individual's financial situation, 41 per cent of those surveyed think they will need between $1001-$2500 per month and 31 per cent say between $2501-$5000.

ING DIRECT's online Retirement Calculator is an easy-to-use resource that can help Canadians calculate how much they will need to save between now and retirement. The calculator provides an estimate based on current retirement savings, monthly contributions, age and other factors.

Additional survey findings:


...Of those Canadians with RSPs, 29% are currently not making any contributions towards their RSP
...For 44%, retirement plans have not been impacted by the past year's economic and/or stock market performance
...Fifty-nine per cent of respondents who have an active RSP contributed about the same amount in 2011, as they did in 2010. One in five (19%) contributed more, and one in five (22%) contributed less
...Twenty-nine per cent expect to retire between 61-65 years of age, 22% said between 55-60
...The performance of the economy and/or stock market in 2011 has delayed the expected time of retirement for 18% of Canadians

Age & Gender

...Majority of Canadian women (71%) don't have a financial plan to meet their retirement goals vs. 66% of men
...Comparing 2011 RSP contributions to 2010, Canadians aged 25-34 (25%) are much more likely to have contributed more in 2011 than Canadians aged 35-54 (16%) and those over 55 years (12%)
...One-third (35%) of Canadians over 55 don't have an RSP
...For 53% of Canadians 18-24, saving for a big purchase is their top priority, followed by paying off student loans (31%)
...A quarter of Canadians (26%) aged 35-54 with kids expect to retire later than planned
...Men (25%) are significantly more likely than women (19%) to feel financially prepared for retirement


...Fifty-eight per cent of Atlantic Canadians don't have an RSP - the highest among all regions
...Residents of Manitoba/Saskatchewan (64%) are significantly more likely to have an RSP than Canadians from other provinces
...Mutual funds are particularly popular in Ontario (63%), compared with Manitoba/Saskatchewan (48%) and Quebec (53%)
...Albertans (30%) and Ontarians (27%) are much more likely than British Columbians (19%) to intend on contributing more to their RSP in 2012 than they did in 2011
...Quebecers (48%) are much more likely than those from Alberta (37%) and Manitoba/Saskatchewan (35%) to be considering their financial well-being when thinking about retirement

ING DIRECT offers Canadians a range of retirement investment options, including RSP Mutual Funds, GICs, TFSAs and savings accounts. All new clients who open a RSP or TFSA will receive a $25 sign-up bonus (limited time offer). Visit ingdirect.ca/peaceofmind to learn more.


ING DIRECT is Canada's leading direct bank with over 1.8 million Clients and more than $37.6 billion in total assets. ING DIRECT gives the power of saving to all Canadians by offering high-value, simple products such as high interest Savings Accounts with no fees or service charges, low rates on mortgages and a no-fee daily Chequing Account that actually pays interest. Low cost, index based mutual funds are sold through ING DIRECT Funds Limited. ING DIRECT has been operating in Canada since 1997 and paid more than $5 billion in interest to Clients. ING DIRECT is open for banking 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, at ingdirect.ca, on mobile devices at m.ingdirect.ca or by calling 1-800 ING DIRECT (1-800-464-3743).

About the Survey

From December 21-28, 2011, an online survey was conducted among a sample of 2,002 Canadian adults who are Angus Reid Forum panel members. The margin of error — which measures sampling variability — is +/- 2.19%, 19 times out of 20. The sample was balanced by age, gender and region according to the most recent census data. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Measha Brueggergosman Asks Canadians to Take Care of Their Hearts for the Ones They Love

Internationally-acclaimed Canadian soprano shares her heart health wake-up call and helps Becel®, founding sponsor of The Heart and Stroke Foundation's The Heart Truth™ campaign, raise awareness of women's heart health

TORONTO, January 18, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - As mothers, wives, daughters, friends and pillars of their communities, many Canadian women are quick to put their own needs aside for the benefit of others. Whether it's caring for an aging parent, dropping everything for a sick child, or inspiring those around them to be and do their best, women are no strangers to self-sacrifice. Yet while their hearts are in the right place, their heart health may not be - and as a result, one in three Canadian women die each year from heart disease and stroke.

That's why Becel®, the founding sponsor of The Heart and Stroke Foundation's The Heart Truth™ campaign, has partnered with award-winning Canadian opera singer Measha Brueggergosman to spread a potentially lifesaving message to help empower Canadian women to protect their heart health. Measha underwent emergency open-heart surgery in 2009 after a near brush with death due to a dissected aorta.

"Even though I spent a lot of time in my 20s trying to get and stay 'healthy' by losing weight, I completely neglected factors like blood pressure and high cholesterol. As a result, I ended up in a scary emergency situation and now need to keep a close eye on my heart health for the rest of my life," said Brueggergosman. "So many women don't realize that if they don't look after their own hearts first, they might not be there to take care of the people they love. I hope my story reminds Canadian women to protect and cherish their heart health."

The facts are heartbreaking but true: heart disease and stroke is the #1 killer of women in Canada - and in 2008 alone, there were seven times more deaths among Canadian women from heart disease and stroke than from breast cancer.

Know Your Number, Know Your Risk

A survey conducted by Becel® found that almost 70 per cent of Canadians - about 20 million people - don't know their own cholesterol number. Yet it's estimated that as many as 10 million Canadian adults have a cholesterol level that is higher than the recommended target.

"Knowing their cholesterol number is one easy step that all Canadians can take to help reduce their risk of heart disease and stroke, since high blood cholesterol is a key risk factor for the disease," said Maria Ricupero, registered dietitian. "In fact, women can proactively reduce their risk for heart disease and stroke by as much as 80 per cent by making lifestyle changes and taking action to improve their health."

To help address this issue, Becel®, in its role as founding sponsor of the Heart and Stroke Foundation's The Heart Truth™ campaign, is offering free cholesterol screening tests at eight malls and in more than 200 stores across the country during the month of February. Visit www.becel.ca for more information about testing locations and to learn more about heart healthy living, or speak with a doctor about getting a cholesterol test.

Get pro.activ about Heart Health

Brueggergosman's family has also seen its share of heart issues. In fact, her father had to undergo a quadruple bypass a few years ago, and there is a history of heart problems and diabetes in her family. Her mother, Ann Gosman, is also now acutely aware of how lifestyle choices can impact heart health.

"My family has seen so much heartache - literally - over the past few years, and I can truly say from experience that the time is now for a wake-up call for Canadian women to start taking care of their heart health," said Gosman. "I want women to know that they should feel empowered when it comes to their heart health, because it is possible to help control this disease. Proper diet and exercise are priorities in my life, and I make sure to get my cholesterol checked on a regular basis."

Diet plays a critical role in heart health, and a healthy diet low in saturated and trans fats may reduce the risk of heart disease. Eating foods with plant sterols can also help significantly reduce cholesterol levels.

"Plant sterols can help lower blood cholesterol by partially blocking cholesterol absorption into the bloodstream," said Ricupero. "They're found naturally in vegetables, fruits and nuts, but it's challenging to get the amount recommended to lower cholesterol from these foods alone - so that's why foods with plant sterols can help."

One serving (two teaspoons) of Becel® pro.activ® calorie-reduced margarine with plant sterols provides 40 per cent of the daily amount of plant sterols shown to help lower cholesterol in adults.

For more information, visit www.becel.ca.

About The Heart Truth™ campaign

The Heart and Stroke Foundation's The Heart Truth campaign is calling on women to put their own health first, make heart healthy lifestyle changes, recognize heart attack and stroke symptoms and seek prompt treatment. Heart disease and stroke is the # 1 killer of women in Canada, but most don't know it. Heart disease is not a "man's disease": women are more likely than men to die of a heart attack or stroke. But by taking care of themselves and making incremental heart healthy lifestyle changes, women can add more years to their life and more life to their years. In fact, women can reduce their risk of heart disease and stroke by as much as 80 per cent by making lifestyle changes. The Red Dress is the official symbol of The Heart Truth campaign. It represents women's courage, passion and their power for change as they share the truth with others and raise awareness about the importance of heart health. To find out more, visit www.thehearttruth.ca.

About Becel®

Becel® has always believed in the importance of caring for your heart. It's why Becel® margarine was created, and why the brand remains dedicated to educating Canadians about the importance of heart healthy living. Through its development of educational resources to help Canadians manage their heart health, its founding sponsorship of The Heart and Stroke Foundation's The Heart Truth™ campaign, and in the development of products such as Becel® pro.activ® calorie-reduced margarine with plant sterols, the first food with plant sterols in Canada, Becel® maintains its commitment to heart health innovation and education. For more information, visit www.becel.ca.

About Unilever

Unilever is one of the world's leading suppliers of fast moving consumer goods with strong operations in more than 100 countries and sales in 180. With products that are used over two billion times a day around the world, we work to create a better future every day and help people feel good, look good and get more out of life with brands and services that are good for them and good for others. In Canada the portfolio includes brand icons such as: Axe, Becel, Ben & Jerry's, Bertolli, Breyers, Degree, Dove personal care products, Good Humor, Hellmann's, Klondike, Knorr, Lipton, Nexxus, Noxzema, Popsicle, Q-Tips, Ragu, Skippy, St. Ives, TIGI, TRESemmé, and Vaseline. All of the preceding brand names are registered trademarks of the Unilever Group of Companies. Unilever Canada employs more than 1,600 people generating approximately $1.4 billion in sales in 2011. For more information, please visit www.unilever.ca.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Premiers Announce Health Care Innovation Working Group

VICTORIA, British Columbia, January 17, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - Premiers announced that Prince Edward Island Premier Robert Ghiz and Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall will co-chair a Health Care Innovation Working Group composed of all provincial and territorial health ministers. While acknowledging that Canada's provinces and territories are pursuing innovation in their own jurisdictions, Premiers recognize that more can be done together.

Premiers are committed to the proposition that ongoing collaboration and cooperation is essential to providing Canadians with access to the best health care in the world. The purpose of this provincial and territorial initiative is to drive a collaborative process for transformation and innovation to help ensure the sustainable delivery of health care services. This focus on innovation will also seek to enhance provincial/territorial capacity to better meet new challenges in our health care systems, including the needs of seniors, patients with chronic diseases and Northern populations.

The Health Care Innovation Working Group will provide its first report at the July 2012 Council of the Federation annual meeting in Halifax.

"This is a bold move with real timelines," said Premier Christy Clark, chair of this week's Council of the Federation meeting. "The message we want to send is that we are working together to innovate and provide better care for seniors and all Canadians."

"This crucial work will be done under the leadership of Premiers working with health care providers", Premier Robert Ghiz said, "They are the untapped strength of the system."

"This year marks the 50th anniversary of Medicare" noted Premier Brad Wall. " Premiers want to create a new approach that provides better quality care while being sustainable."

In consultation with health care providers, over the next six months the working group will focus on:

...Scope of practice: examining the scope of practice of health care providers and teams in order to better meet patient and population needs in a safe, competent and cost effective manner

...Human resources management: address health human resource challenges and explore more coordinated management to address competition across health systems.

...Clinical practice guidelines: accelerating the development and adoption of best clinical and surgical practice guidelines so that all Canadians benefit from up-to-date practices.

It is expected that the chairs and provincial/territorial health ministers will meet at least two times prior to reporting progress in July.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Butt out for good, with help from your pharmacist

Many Ontario pharmacists now certified to provide smoking cessation counseling

TORONTO, January 14, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - As National Non-Smoking Week kicks off tomorrow, the Ontario Pharmacists' Association (OPA) is reminding Ontarians that pharmacists now have an expanded role in helping patients quit smoking.

Eligible patients seeking smoking cessation counseling can now receive this service free-of-charge at many Ontario pharmacies, thanks to a decision made last fall by the Ontario government and based on the recommendations of the Expanding Professional Pharmacy Services Working Group (EPPS).

"The government's decision recognizes pharmacists' medication management expertise and their accessibility, and reinforces the vital role they can play in helping patients manage their health through important steps such as quitting smoking," said Darryl Moore, Chair, Ontario Pharmacists' Association. "This is something the Association has been advocating for over the last several years."

Since smoking is the country's leading preventable cause of death, and more than 45,000 Canadians die from tobacco-related causes each year, "smoking cessation is the most powerful and cost-effective intervention pharmacists can provide," Moore said.

Smoking cessation services are available to all Ontario Drug Benefit recipients free of charge. Based on the needs of the patient, services can include a readiness assessment, a consultation meeting and a series of follow-up sessions over a one-year period. Pharmacists can schedule appointments that fit the needs of their patients and will guide them through the process, which can include developing a personalized quit plan, recommendations for over-the-counter medications or a referral to a physician for a prescription medication if required, practical counseling on issues such as identifying smoking triggers and how to manage cravings, and regular check-ins to discuss issues such as adherence, effectiveness and any side effects.

Since September, more than 1,700 Ontario pharmacists have registered for OPA's smoking-cessation education program, and stop-smoking support is being provided to patients across the province.

Tobacco has an impact on medication effectiveness

"Of all healthcare professionals, pharmacists have the greatest number of touch points with patients and caregivers. We answer questions, conduct MedsCheck appointments and dispense and counsel on prescription and over-the-counter medications," said Moore. "This gives us countless opportunities to speak with patients about smoking cessation. And as experts in medication management, we are trained to talk to patients about smoking so that we can properly monitor drug therapy and make adjustments as needed."

While many patients are aware of the long-term health impacts of smoking, many do not realize that smoking also affects the effectiveness of medications. Tobacco affects how the body absorbs, uses, and eliminates certain medications such as insulin, blood thinners or antidepressants. When patients start or stop smoking, medications may need to be adjusted. Pharmacists who provide smoking cessation services can follow up with their patients regularly to determine how they are progressing, provide advice and encouragement, and determine whether any adjustments need to be made.

About Ontario Pharmacists' Association

The Ontario Pharmacists' Association is the professional association that represents the views and interests of more than 12,500 pharmacists and pharmacists-in-training across the province. The Association works to inspire excellence in the profession and practice of pharmacy, and to promote wellness for patients. For more information, visit www.opatoday.com

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The Federal Role in the Future of Health & Health Care in Canada

OTTAWA, January 12, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - For Canada to rank among countries with the healthiest populations, we need a broadly shared vision of health and health care, sustained leadership by the federal government, as well as action and accountability on the parts of provincial and territorial governments, health care providers and the public.

This is the main conclusion of the report on the role of the federal government in health and health care that was commissioned by the Health Action Lobby (HEAL) - a coalition representing 34 national health organizations. HEAL is releasing the report in advance of this month's meeting of the Council of the Federation at which Canada's premiers will discuss the future of health and health care.

"This report is an important contribution to understanding the intersection of health policy issues and the potential role of the federal government" said Mr. Glenn Brimacombe, Co-Chair HEAL, and President & CEO of the Association of Canadian Academic Healthcare Organizations, "We welcome the report and HEAL looks forward to discussing its implications in the New Year".

The HEAL report "Functional Federalism and the Future of Medicare in Canada", authored by Mr. Bill Tholl and Mr. Guy Bujold, contains 15 key findings informed by a series of interviews with senior thought leaders in the health system, an on-line survey of members from HEAL and the Canadian Health Leadership Network, and a five-country international literature review (see Appendix A). It identifies a number of specific health policy issues which require effective federal and provincial and territorial government leadership. These include: chronic disease management, home care & long-term care, access and wait times, and mental health.

The report addresses a number of important overarching questions including, what is the appropriate role for the federal government as it relates to health in light of Canada's decentralized health system? What is the best way to manage the interdependence and independence of Canada's jurisdictions when it comes to reform of health care delivery? How accountabilities and authorities for health and health care renewal need to be aligned in the future?

"The future of health and health care is certainly one of, and many would say the most important public policy issue facing federal, provincial and territorial governments. This report is intended to advance the necessary thinking and discussions to address the health challenges we are facing as a nation, and to inform the design and implementation of policies and programs that best meet the evolving health and health care needs of Canadians", said Dr. Karen Cohen Co-Chair HEAL, and CEO of the Canadian Psychological Association.

The full report is available at www.healthactionlobby.ca.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Study finds that treatment of depression can increase work productivity

TORONTO, January 11, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - A new study from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) has found that employees with depression who receive treatment while still working are significantly more likely to be highly productive than those who do not. This is the first study of its kind to look into a possible correlation between treatment and productivity.

The study is particularly significant at a time when the Canadian economy continues to face uncertainty. Mental illness costs the Canadian economy an estimated $51 billion annually, with a third of that attributed to productivity losses.

Published in the current issue of the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, the study examined data from a large-scale community survey of employed and recently employed people in Alberta.

People who experienced a depressive episode were significantly less likely to be highly productive, the study showed.

"We expected this, as past research has found that depression has adverse effects on comprehension, social participation, and day-to-day-functioning," said Dr. Carolyn Dewa, Head of CAMH's Centre for Research on Employment and Workplace Health and lead author.

"What's exciting is we found that treatment for depression improves work productivity. People who had experienced a moderate depressive episode and received treatment were 2.5 times more likely to be highly productive compared with those who had no treatment," she says. "Likewise, people who experienced severe depression were seven times more likely to be high-performing than those who had no treatment."

Of the 3000 workers looked at in the sample, 8.5 per cent experienced a depressive episode, representing 255 workers.
Though the results showed the effectiveness of treatment on work and performance, the data also showed a troubling trend. "We found that among all study participants who had been diagnosed with a severe depressive episode, 57 per cent did not receive treatment; 40 per cent of those who experienced a moderate depressive episode did not receive treatment," said Dr. Dewa. "When we look at the success of workers in the sample who received treatment while still in the workplace, it really speaks to the importance of prevention and the need for employers to facilitate treatment and support. If people are able to receive treatment early, disability leave, which costs companies $18,000 per leave, may be avoided."

"Stigma and discrimination have often affected people's willingness to access services, as has the lack of knowledge around supports available in the workplace," added Dr. Dewa. "It is crucial that employers offer mental health interventions to their employees and support them in engaging in treatment, as well as continuing to support them as they transition back into the workplace."

The data for this analysis was collected by the Institute for Health Economics, Alberta.

The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) is Canada's largest mental health and addiction teaching hospital, as well as one of the world's leading research centres in the area of addiction and mental health. CAMH combines clinical care, research, education, policy development and health promotion to help transform the lives of people affected by mental health and addiction issues.

CAMH is fully affiliated with the University of Toronto, and is a Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization Collaborating Centre.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Baycrest and ZoomerMedia Limited Launch Strategic Co-Branding and Content Partnership

Partnership will offer a clinically-validated cognitive screening test for the "worried well" to do at home

Debuts special section about brain health on 50Plus.com

TORONTO, January 10, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - Baycrest and ZoomerMedia Limited have formed a new strategic co-branding and content partnership to inform and educate the public about the latest science on aging well, including brain health. Baycrest, a global leader in developing and providing innovations in aging and brain health, lost no time in tapping into ZoomerMedia's ability to reach Canada's "Zoomer" (45-plus) population. At the 2011 Zoomer Show last October, the partnership unveiled a prototype online self-assessment tool that enables aging adults to assess their thinking skills from the comfort and privacy of their home computer. The ultimate aim of the tool will be to indicate whether the individual is experiencing normal age-related cognitive problems or those possibly indicative of a more severe impairment, such as Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI), that requires a visit to their doctor.

Adults experiencing memory problems often delay going to their family doctor because they are unsure whether they have a problem worth investigating. Even a couple of years' delay can waste precious time in catching a brain disease, such as Alzheimer's, at its earliest stage when treatments are most effective.

At the Zoomer Show, Baycrest surveyed consumer interest in the prototype online cognitive screening test. Results confirmed that a majority of people had known a friend or family member with dementia, were very concerned about their own risk of dementia, and would use a confidential online test that could indicate whether they should follow up with their doctor for a medical assessment of their cognitive health.

The cognitive screening tool is scheduled for a market launch in June and will be the first product available from Cogniciti Inc., a for-profit company created by Baycrest and MaRS, Canada's premier innovation centre. The self-administered assessment tool is informed by Baycrest's world-class cognitive science and will test the same areas of cognition, such as memory, attention and problem-solving skills, which a clinician would do with a patient. ZoomerMedia will play an important role in the promotion and distribution of the online test to Canada's 14.5 million Zoomers.

Last November, Baycrest and ZoomerMedia launched a second initiative - "Inside the Lab" - on ZoomerMedia's largest website, 50Plus.com. By drawing on Baycrest's robust library of expert articles on brain health, the latest research breakthroughs, and helpful clinical advice, the new section provides readers with all they need to know about the journey of aging and the best ways to ensure long-term wellness.

The opening lineup of articles includes: "How to get a whole brain workout", "Debunking brain myths: Does size matter?" and "Smart strategies to remember passwords and PINs". New articles will be added on a weekly basis.

"Both Baycrest and ZoomerMedia are committed to improving the health, well-being and autonomy of individuals as they age," said Moses Znaimer, Founder and CEO of ZoomerMedia Limited and President of CARP, the 350,000-member national non-profit organization committed to protecting the interests of Canadians as they age. "Our partnership is a union of two complementary organizations: one, a world-renowned expert in transforming the journey of aging, and the other, a leader in communicating up-to-the-minute information on that subject to the people who are keenest to know it."

"Baycrest is a world-class innovator and a trusted source of information on aging and brain health," said Anthony Melman, Chair of Baycrest's Board of Directors. "Partnering with ZoomerMedia gives Baycrest the opportunity to share knowledge with the influential, powerful and educated 45plus Zoomer population who want the very best information on strategies to improve their journey of aging."

About Baycrest

Baycrest is a global leader in developing and providing innovations in aging and brain health. Headquartered on a 22-acre campus in Toronto and fully affiliated with the University of Toronto, Baycrest provides care to more than 2,500 frail and active seniors every day in outpatient and inpatient programs and residential settings. Baycrest's Centre for Memory and Neurotherapeutics offers clinical and educational programs for memory, dementia and related disorders.

About ZoomerMedia Limited

ZoomerMedia is a multimedia company that serves the 45plus "Zoomer" demographic through television, radio, magazine, internet and trade shows. ZoomerMedia's television properties include; Vision TV, Canada's only multi-faith specialty television service; ONE: the Body, Mind, Spirit and Love Channel, offering programs on exercise, meditation, yoga, natural health and living a planet-friendly lifestyle; Joytv 10 in Vancouver and Joytv 11 in Winnipeg, two over the air conventional stations, available over the air and on cable in their respective markets. ZoomerMedia's radio properties include CFMZ-FM Toronto - The New Classical 96.3FM, CFMX-FM Cobourg - The New Classical 103.1FM, Canada's only commercial classical music radio stations serving the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and eastern Ontario, and CFZM-AM 740 Toronto - The New AM740 Zoomer Radio, the last music service left on the AM dial in the GTA. ZoomerMedia also publishes Zoomer Magazine, the largest paid circulation magazine in Canada for the mature market. ZoomerMedia is Canada's leading provider of online content targeting the 45plus age group through many properties, the key one being 50Plus.com. ZoomerMedia also has a trade show division that conducts the "Zoomer Show", consumer shows directed to the 45plus age group and ideaCity, an annual Canadian conference also known as 'Canada's Premiere Meeting of the Minds'.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Pharmacists regarded as most trusted profession for a second year running!

VANCOUVER, January 4, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - Pharmacists have once again claimed top place in a poll of the most trusted professions in Canada. According to the Ipsos Reid poll, eight in ten (78 per cent) Canadians say they trust pharmacists, scoring them a 5, 6, or 7 on a trust scale of 1 to 7.

"We already know how many people rely on their community pharmacist," said CEO of BC Pharmacy Association, Marnie Mitchell. "This poll confirms that patients trust their pharmacist to provide the expert advice and guidance needed to help them manage their health."

The poll, which was conducted for the first time in 2010, tested a total of 26 professions. In both years, pharmacists placed at the top of the list. In the latest poll, they are followed by doctors (75 per cent ), Canadian soldiers (74 per cent ), airline pilots (73 per cent ) and teachers (65 per cent ).

"Recent years have seen pharmacy evolve in a way that has had a real impact on patients," added Mitchell.

"From providing advice on managing medications, to giving flu shots and renewing prescriptions, patients are finding that their pharmacist plays a crucial role in their health and the health of their family. This is one of the reasons why pharmacists continue to be the most trusted profession."

BC Pharmacy Association is a not-for-profit, professional association which represents more than 2,600 pharmacists and 800 pharmacies throughout British Columbia.

The Ipsos Reid poll was conducted between December 14 and 19, 2011, on behalf of Postmedia News and Global Television. For more information visit www.ipsos.ca

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Canadian Cancer Society's Top 10 Breakthroughs of 2011

Society funded teams are changing the landscape of cancer research

TORONTO, January 3, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - The Canadian Cancer Society is proud to announce its top 10 breakthroughs of 2011. This list of accomplishments showcases how researchers funded by the Society continue to lead the way in advances that will reduce the number of Canadians diagnosed with and dying from cancer, and improve the quality of life for people living with and beyond cancer. Due to progress in cancer research, over 60 per cent of Canadians diagnosed with cancer will survive, compared with only 25 per cent when the Society began funding research in the 1940s.

"2011 has been a very exciting year for cancer research," said Sarah Bouma, Senior Manager, Research, Canadian Cancer Society, Ontario Division. "Society funded researchers have made tremendous gains, particularly in clinical trials. Research advances in Ontario and across the country are impacting the lives of people living with cancer, their families and caregivers."

Story highlights include:

...A landmark clinical trial of a new way to prevent breast cancer.

...A Toronto protocol that gives 100% survival for families with a specific hereditary cancer.

...The discovery of a human blood stem cell that could end the search for bone marrow.

...A new imaging method that could detect lung cancer with more accuracy.

...A clinical trial that has found that men with prostate cancer can take a drug 'holiday'.

...The development of tumour-killing nanoparticles.

The top 10 breakthroughs are available at http://files.newswire.ca/1012/top10breakthroughs.pdf.

In addition to the top 10 breakthroughs, seven scientists funded by the Society received major national awards recognizing their research achievements. Of those seven, three researchers were elected by their peers to the Royal Society of Canada, one of the highest honours a scholar can receive in the arts, humanities and sciences in this country.

"We have made great progress, but there's much more to be done," added Bouma. "Each day with the help of our donors, we are fighting cancer from all angles including prevention, earlier detection, improved treatments and quality of life."

The Canadian Cancer Society is a national community-based organization of volunteers whose mission is the eradication of cancer and the enhancement of the quality of life of people living with cancer. When you want to know more about cancer, visit our website www.cancer.ca or call our toll-free, bilingual Cancer Information Service at 1-888-939-3333.