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Island Health video series receives international recognition

A video series created by Island Health for family caregivers of people with dementia disorders has received awards from two different organizations.

“Sharing the Journey: Practical Approaches to Caring for a Loved One With Dementia” is being recognized for its high quality and value as a learning tool.

The 18-part video series offers practical advice to help caregivers respond to new challenges while maintaining meaningful and healthy relationships with loved ones.

The project was developed by Island Health’s Distributed Multimedia Systems team in collaboration with family caregivers and experts in the field of dementia care.

It was selected from more than 400 entries to receive a silver award at the Health Information Resource Centre’s spring Digital Health Awards, which honours the world’s best digital health resources.

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“A big congratulations to the multimedia and digital team at Island Health for creating this series for families facing the journey of caring for loved ones with dementia,” says Health Minister Adrian Dix. “It’s a great honour for them to be recognized, and this represents the innovation and outreach we strive for in the health system.”

Island Health Digital Media Consultant, Michael Fountain, also received an Award of Distinction from the 2019 Videographer Awards in recognition of his work leading the production and editing process.

The video series reflects the lived experiences of caregivers who participated in the project.

“Many family caregivers have said providing a better quality of life for loved ones is the most important job in life. But there are unique stresses that go with caregiving that can have an impact on the wellbeing of the caregiver, and their capacity to continue over time,” says Sandra Somers, a retired Senior’s Health nurse and clinical advisor to the project.

“The involvement of caregivers who shared their personal experiences and knowledge makes these videos authentic and impactful,” says Cheryl Damstetter, Vice President of Priority Populations & Initiatives for Island Health. “Our hope is that these videos will help families who are navigating life with dementia. We’re very grateful to everyone who helped make this project a reality.”

The Victoria Hospitals Foundation provided $80,000 to fund the video project.

“We have the profound role of being stewards to the generous donors in our community who choose to champion health care – we are grateful to the individuals who supported this initiative. It is an important element of health care in our community,” says Victoria Hospitals Foundation acting Executive Director, Avery Brohman. “We extend our deepest gratitude and congratulations to Island Health for this powerful video series.”

Each video segment is a few minutes long and focuses on a specific topic, such as wandering, communicating with health-care professionals, or self-care for caregivers.

The segments include advice from health-care professionals, interviews with real-life caregivers and short scenarios performed by actors to demonstrate different responses.

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