Engaging ideas, transforming minds
Engaging ideas, transforming minds

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Canadian Scholars
634 pages
6.75 x 9.75 inches
July 2021
Print ISBN: 9781773382401


Taking a unique look at health promotion and aging in Canada, this edited collection uses the action framework in the Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion to explore the factors and issues related to the health of older adults. The book is organized around the five action areas for health promotion: building healthy public policy, creating supportive environments, strengthening community action, developing personal skills, and reorienting health and social services.

Adhering to the holistic approach that health in older age involves physical, mental, emotional, and social well-being, this comprehensive collection covers a wide range of interventions that are designed to benefit and protect the aging population’s health, quality of life, rights, and dignity, while building intergenerational solidarity and collaboration. Readers will learn about aging from a health promotion perspective; the context, environment, and issues related to older adults in Canada; as well as best practices in health promotion, public health, and the care of older adults. Promoting the Health of Older Adults is an invaluable resource for both graduate and undergraduate students in gerontology, health promotion, nursing, social work, and related fields.


  • considers the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for health promotion and aging
  • provides an up-to-date profile of older adults in Canada and current/future trends in aging and health, including the use of new technologies and policies and practices in health promotion, public health, and other disciplines
  • includes a wealth of pedagogical features, such as learning objectives, critical thinking questions, a glossary, and online supplementary materials

Table of Contents

Foreword: The Convergence of Health Promotion and Gerontology
Gloria Gutman



Part I: Key Demographic, Conceptual, and Theoretical Elements

Chapter 1: A Portrait of Aging and Older Adults in Canada
Peggy Edwards

Chapter 2: Key Concepts in Health Promotion and Gerontology
Irving Rootman and Mélanie Levasseur

Chapter 3: Theories and Models in Health Promotion: Key Landmarks on the Road Map to Optimal Practice and Research with Older Adults
Lucie Richard and Johanne Filiatrault

Personal Reflection 1: Did You Just Call Me Old Lady? A Ninety-Five-Year-Old Reflects on Aging in an Ageist Society
Lillian Zimmerman

Part II: Building Healthy Public Policy

Chapter 4: Public Policy for Healthy Aging: Challenges and Frameworks for Action
Peggy Edwards, Jim Hamilton, and Michael Routledge

Chapter 5: Policy and Program Innovations for an Aging Society
Sherri Torjman

Personal Reflection 2: Adopting a Rights-Based Approach to Policies and Practices Involving Older Persons
Margaret Gillis

Part III: Creating Supportive Environments

Chapter 6: Age-Friendly Communities
Verena Menec, Jim Hamilton, and Sheila Novek

Chapter 7: Housing in Later Life
Suzanne Garon, Samuèle Rémillard-Boilard, Mario Paris, François Racicot-Lanoue, and Christyne Lavoie

Chapter 8: Transportation for an Aging Society
Neena L. Chappell

Chapter 9: AgeTech: Technology-Based Solutions for Aging Societies
Andrew Sixsmith

Chapter 10: Reducing Social Isolation: Policies and Programs Fostering Social Support and Participation
Daniel Naud and Mélanie Levasseur

Chapter 11: Grow Old Along with Me: Relationships in Later Life
Peggy Edwards

Chapter 12: Mistreatment of Older Adults
Marie Beaulieu, Julien Cadieux Genesse, and Kevin St-Martin

Part IV: Strengthening Community Action

Chapter 13: Community Development by and for Older Adults
Mélanie Levasseur, Daniel Naud, and Sonia Routhier

Chapter 14: Busting Some Myths: The EngAGEment and Contributions of Older Persons in Society
Peggy Edwards

Chapter 15: Health Promotion among Older Indigenous People
Charlotte Loppie

Chapter 16: Aging in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Two-Spirit (LGBTQ2+) Communities
Arne Stinchcombe and Kimberley Wilson

Chapter 17: Health Promotion Practices for Immigrant Older Adults
Karen M. Kobayashi and Mushira Mohsin Khan

Personal Reflection 3: Aging: The Advancement from Cocksure Ignorance to Thoughtful Uncertainty—Reflection from an Indigenous Elder
Woodrow Morrison

Part V: Developing Personal Skills

Chapter 18: Never Too Old to Learn: Lifelong Learning and Adult Education
Arpi Hamalian and Michael Cooke

Chapter 19: Improving the Health Literacy of Older Adults
Lorie Donelle and Irving Rootman

Chapter 20: Mental Health, Cognitive Resilience, and Vitality
Kiran Rabheru, Keri-Leigh Cassidy, Beverley Cassidy, and David Conn

Chapter 21: Healthy Aging through the Arts: Supporting Older People to Thrive in Their Communities
Alison Phinney, Claire Gram, jil p. weaving, and Elaine Moody

Chapter 22: Building Personal Skills for Healthy Eating: From Risk to Resilience
Doris Gillis and Laura Gougeon

Chapter 23: Encouraging and Supporting Physical Activity for Older Adults
Christa Costas-Bradstreet and John C. Spence

Personal Reflection 4: Living and Aging with a Disability: A Study in Resilience
Mark Nagler

Part VI: Reorienting Health Services

Chapter 24: The Role of Public Health in Promoting Healthy Aging
Pegeen Walsh

Chapter 25: Improving Community Health and Social Services: A British Columbia Case Study
Laura Kadowaki, Kahir Lalji, and Marcy Cohen

Chapter 26: Reablement: A Unique Approach to Regaining, Maintaining, or Improving Independence in Daily Life
Nicole Dubuc and Bryony Beresford

Personal Reflection 5: Reflecting on 45 Years in Public Health Nursing
Connie Swinton

Chapter 27: Putting Life into Years: Promoting Health and Joy in Nursing Homes
Pat Armstrong, Hugh Armstrong, and Jacqueline Choiniere

Chapter 28: Reorienting Mental Health Services for Older Adults in Canada
Kimberley Wilson

Chapter 29: Supporting Caregivers and Caregiving in an Aging Canada
Laura M. Funk

Chapter 30: Substance Use Among Older Adults: Epidemiology and Implications for Health Promotion Systems
Karen Urbanoski

Chapter 31: Death and Dying in Canada: A Family Lens
Katherine Arnup and Nathan Battams

Personal Reflection 6: Reflections on Death and Dying in Canada
Barry Worsfold

Part VII: Conclusion

Chapter 32: Health Promotion and Aging During a Pandemic: Risk, Resilience, and COVID-19
Andrew V. Wister

Personal Refection 7: On Being an Older Person in the Wake of the Coronavirus
Peggy Edwards

Chapter 33: Moving Forward on Healthy Aging: Challenges and Opportunities
Frances Grunberg, Peggy Edwards, Irving Rootman, and Mélanie Levasseur


About the Contributors



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