MHC Blog

MHC Blog

88 Year Old Man Has Purpose: Socks for Shelters

At My Healthcare Concierge, we strongly believe that seniors should remain active and engaged, and have a sense of purpose to keep them going.    One of the best ways to do that is to help others.    Bob Rutherford used his background in building machines (and knitting) to make super knitting machines that can knit at 90 stitches per second.  He’s already made over 10,000 socks for homeless shelters.  When his wife passed away 7 years ago, he didn’t know what to do with himself. His son had great advice “to help yourself, help someone else”.

See below Bob’s photo the CBC article about his story.     Way to go Bob!

Bob Rutherford with his handmade sock-knitting machine.


Canada’s Health System Fails for End of Life

Many families struggle to support their loved ones with dignity and comfort in their final months.   While in Ontario there are some good palliative care programs, and additional publicly funded home care for people deemed palliative, the system still leaves many behind.

What frustrates palliative doctors is that while we have now provided medical assistance in dying (Bill C-14), we don’t give everyone the option of a comfortable, pain free way to live out their final months with appropriate hospice or home care with nursing.   As a society we have done good job supporting the beginning of life (pregnancy, delivery, pediatric care etc), but we have gaps related to end of life.   The reality is that there are now more seniors than kids in Canada.

See below a good article from 2016 written by the President of the Canadian Society of Palliative Care Physicians.    Its a difficult topic but an important question regarding priorities for the Canadian healthcare system.

Globe Article:  Canada’s Health System Favors Cradle and Ignores Grave

Hospital Sets Example for Caring for Elderly Patients

Progressive hospitals are realizing that they can provide better care to seniors that also lowers length of stay which reduces costs.    Dr Samir Sinha is a leading geriatrician, and head of geriatrics for Sinai Health System and the University Health Network.

They have implemented strategies to enable seniors in the hospital to be more engaged and active in the day allowing for better sleep at night.

See the article below from the Globe and Mail

Dr. Samir Sinha, Mount Sinai’s Director of Geriatrics walks through the Acute Care for Elders (ACE) unit at his hospital on December 6, 2016. (JENNIFER ROBERTS/JENNIFER ROBERTS FOR)

Caring for Aging Parents Impacts Career

When a parent has a terminal illness, or has a homecare crisis, or simply needs your help, it can mean for some daughters and sons flying to another city and away from career and immediate life commitments.   In todays high pressure work environments there can be guilt about feeling inadequate in both helping parents and meeting career expectations.    For every understanding boss or flexible work environment, there are other environments where helping aging parents impacts career advancement, opportunities and reputation.     There are no standard answers, or easy solutions.

See below an article written by Rosanna Fay for The Atlantic that chronicles her struggles balancing a demanding executive career as a co-founder with helping her terminally ill parents.


Be Careful Seniors: It is Flu Season

Every winter we like to remind everyone, but particularly seniors, to get a flu shot and to take precautions.   Globally, 5 to 10% of adults each year get the flu.   People over 65 are at the highest risk of serious complications from the flu, even death.    The best defence is a combination of the flu shot, regular proper cleaning of hands, sneezing into your sleeve, eating well and getting sufficient sleep.   With the flu shot being available at over 2,600 pharmacies as well as doctor offices, its very easy to get the flu shot for you and your family.

Our medical director Dr Kim Panovka and her family get the flu shot each year.

Visit to find a flu shot clinic near you.

Below, we include an article from Dr David Williams, the Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario.

Article from Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer