Transcript: Show #22 | Mar 06, 2001

A slate appears with the caption "The advice given in the preceding programmes is of a general nature only viewers should consult their own medical professional for medical advice specific to their circumstances."

The title of the show appears: "Your Health." Clips of the episode are displayed behind the title sequence.

Maureen says THIS WEEK,.

A woman in her forties says YOU ARE A PRISONER WITHIN
THE FOUR WALLS, IN ORDER TO
PROVIDE FULLTIME CARE FOR A
PATIENT WHETHER THAT PATIENT
IS AN ELDERLY PARENT OR
WHETHER IT IS YOUR DISABLED
CHILD.

Maureen says CAREGIVER
BURNOUT.

A female guest says WHAT THE INVESTIGATORS
TOLD US IS THAT FIRST OF YOU
WILL IT WOULD BE TOO
EXPENSIVE, SECOND IT WAS
HARD TO RECRUIT WOMEN AND
THIRDLY THEY DIDN'T WANT
MENSTRUAL CYCLE...

Maureen says GENDER BIAS IN DRUG
TESTING.

Joe says THERE IS NO DOUBT WE NEED
MAGNESIUM IN OUR DIET.

Maureen says AND JOE
SCHWARCZ ON MAGNESIUM.

(music plays)
The opening sequence begins.

Clips of different people flash against a grey background. A 30-year-old woman with shoulder length black hair looks through a microscope, a 30-year-old with very short black hair holds up her 1-year-old son, a pharmacist counts and organizes red-and-yellow pills, a surgeon cuts into the abdomen of a patient and, finally, a man wearing a ted tank-top lifts weights. An animated microscope, pill bottle, syringe, and small dumbbell fly around the screen.

The title appears: "Your Health."

Maureen stands in a wood-paneled studio with T.V. screens embedded in the walls. She is in her forties, with short wavy red hair. She wears a bright blue shirt under a lavender blazer.

Maureen says HELLO, I'M
MAUREEN TAYLOR.
IT'S MORE COMPASSIONATE, NOT
TO MENTION CHEAPER TO LET
PEOPLE DIE, RECUPERATE OR
SPEND THEIR LAST YEARS
LIVING IN THEIR OWN HOME.
AT LEAST THAT'S THE
CONVENTIONAL WISDOM.
THREE MILLION CANADIANS TOIL
DAILY BEHIND CLOSED DOORS
CARING FOR LOVED ONES IN
THEIR HOME.
BUT THE HOME CARE SYSTEM IS
A PATCHWORK OF PROGRAMS THAT
VARY FROM PROVINCE TO
PROVINCE, IN QUALITY, ACCESS
AND CARE.
OVER THE PAST SIX YEARS ROSE
GIGLIO HAS GIVEN UP HER
CAREER, PERSONAL LIFE AND
FREEDOM TO CARE FOR HER
FRAIL AND AGED PARENTS.

A clip shows Rose pushing his father around on a wheelchair and helping him get on his bed.

A caption reads "Rose Giglio."

Rose is in her forties, with short wavy black hair. She wears black trousers and a gray polo T-shirt.

She says IT IS EMOTIONALLY
DRAINING TO BE A CAREGIVER
BECAUSE ARE YOU NOT REMOVED
FROM THE CARE EVER.
YOU ARE BASICALLY TIED TO IT
24 HOURS IS.
IT IS PHYSICALLY EXHAUSTING
DEPENDING ON THE LEVEL OF
CARE.
IF ARE YOU CARING FOR A
CHRONIC CARE MAN IT IS
PHYSICALLY EXHAUSTING AS
WELL.
AND I GUESS IT'S THE... YOU
HAVE TOTAL LOSS OF FREEDOM
OF MOVEMENT.
YOU ARE BASICALLY UNDER
HOUSE ARREST.
YOU ARE A PRISONER WITHIN
THE FOUR WALLS, IN ORDER TO
PROVIDE FULLTIME CARE FOR A
PATIENT WHETHER THAT PATIENT
IS AN ELDERLY PARENT OR
WHETHER IT IS YOUR DISABLED
CHILD, ARE YOU BASICALLY
IMPRISONED WITHIN THE FOUR
WALLS AND YOU CANNOT LEAVE
UNLESS SOMEONE CAN REPLACE
YOU TO ENSURE THE CONTINUITY
OF THE CARE FOR THAT
PATIENT.

Maureen says PEOPLE LIKE
ROSE ARE OVERWHELMED CARING
FOR A SICK OR ELDERLY
RELATIVE.
STUDIES SHOW THEY SUFFER
FROM DEPRESSION, ANXIETY,
GUILT, AND LONELINESS.

Rose says EVENTUALLY YOUR FRIENDS
STOP CALLING, YOU STOP
CALLING THEM, PRIMARILY
BECAUSE YOU CANNOT
PARTICIPATE IN ANY
ACTIVITIES.
BUT ALSO BECAUSE YOUR WORLD
BECOMES SO NARROW THAT YOU
ONLY HAVE ONE TOPIC OF
CONVERSATION.
AND YOU KNOW THAT YOU
CANNOT... KEEP TALKING ABOUT
CAREGIVER PROBLEMS EVERY
TIME YOU MEET YOUR FRIENDS.
SO YOU STOP SEEING THEM.
WHEN I BROUGHT MY FATHER
HOME IN NOVEMBER OF '94 IT
BEGAN WITH TWO HOURS OF HOME
MAKING SERVICE PER DAY SEVEN
DAYS A WEEK AND A VISIT FROM
A NURSE I BELIEVE AT THAT
TIME IT WAS ONCE A WEEK.
IN THE LAST SIX YEARS THE
HOME MAKING SERVICE AND THE
NURSING VISITS HAVE GONE UP
AND DOWN AND ANYWHERE IN
BETWEEN.
THERE SEEMS TO BE NO RHYME
OR REASON AS TO HOW THEY ARE
INCREASED AND HOW THEY ARE
DECREASED.
WE HAVE HAD MORE SERVICE
THAN WE HAVE TODAY, WE'VE
HAD LESS SERVICE THAN WE
HAVE TODAY.
WE'VE HAD LESS SERVICE THAN
WE HAD WHEN WE FIRST ARRIVED
HOME DESPITE THE FACT THAT
MY FATHER'S DISEASE HAS
PROGRESSED.
THERE SEEMS TO BE NO LOGICAL
REASON IN THE WAY SERVICES
ARE PROVIDED.

Maureen says TIM YOUNG IS THE
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF ONE OF
43 CENTRES SET UP BY THE
ONTARIO GOVERNMENT TO
PROVIDE HOME CARE.
THEY GO UNDER THE NAME
COMMUNITY CARE ACCESS
CENTRES, OR CCAC.

The caption changes to "Tim Young. Executive Director of East York Access Centre."

Tim is in his late forties, clean-shaven and with short straight graying hair. He wears a black suit, white shirt and printed tie.

He says ONE OF THE PROBLEMS IS
THAT PEOPLE AREN'T ENTITLED
TO SERVICE.
HOME-CARE SERVICES ARE NOT
COVERED UNDER THE FIVE
PRINCIPLES OF THE CANADA
HEALTH ACT WHICH INCLUDE
UNIVERSALITY, ACCESSIBILITY,
PORTABILITY,
COMPREHENSIVENESS AND PUBLIC
ADMINISTRATION.
WE'RE NOT COVERED UNDER
THOSE FIVE PRINCIPLES.
DOCTORS ARE.
HOSPITALS ARE.
BUT HOME CARE IS OPERATED
AND FOUNDED AT THE
DISCRETION OF EACH
PROVINCIAL OR TERRITORIAL
GOVERNMENT AND TO VARYING
DEGREES.
IT IS THERE ACROSS THE
COUNTRY.

Maureen says OAKLEY IS A LAWYER AND
FOUNDER OF THE TORONTO
HEALTH COALITION, A
VOLUNTEER ADVOCACY GROUP
CONCERNED ABOUT THE QUALITY
OF HEALTH CARE CANADIANS ARE
GETTING.

The caption changes to "Amani Oakley. Toronto Health Coalition."

Amani is in her late thirties, with long wavy black hair. She wears a red blazer.

She says AT THE MOMENT THE
ENTITLEMENT WHEN YOU ARE AT
HOME FOR HOME CARE IS, IN
FACT, QUITE SMALL.
THERE IS A VERY LOW CEILING
WHICH HAS REAM BEEN DROPPED
BY THE PROVINCIAL
GOVERNMENT.
SO NO MATTER HOW SICK YOU
ARE, YOU CANNOT RECEIVE MORE
THAN A CERTAIN MAXIMUM.

Tim says WHAT PEOPLE CAN EXPECT
VARIES BY PROVINCE, THAT'S
ONE OF THE ISSUES ABOUT LACK
OF NATIONAL STANDARDS.
YOU DON'T KNOW REALLY WHAT
TO EXPECT.
BUT IN ONTARIO, THE MAXIMUM
THAT YOU CAN GET IS 80 HOURS
OF PERSONAL SUPPORT IN THE
FIRST MONTH OF SERVICE AND A
MAXIMUM OF 60 HOURS OF
PERSONAL SUPPORT EVERY MONTH
THEREAFTER.
THAT MEANS A HOMEMAKER OR
PERSONAL SUPPORT WORKER CAN
COME IN FOR MAXIMUM OF SAY
TWO HOURS A DAY.
IF ARE YOU LOOKING AFTER,
FOR EXAMPLE, IN THE
COULDN'T... AN INCONTINENT
MEMBER OF YOUR FAMILY THAT
TWO HOURS A DAY DOESN'T GO
TOO FAR IN TERMS OF LAUNDRY
AND MOVING PEOPLE TO AND
FROM WASHROOM ITS AND ONE
THING OR ANOTHER.
SO THERE IS QUITE A LIMITED
AS TO WHAT WE CAN PROVIDE.

Rose says THE HOME MAKING VISITS
OFFICIALLY THEY INVOLVE
PERSONAL CARE FOR THE
PATIENT AS WELL AS
HOUSEKEEPING SERVICES.
WHAT I FOUND IS BECAUSE MY
FATHER'S NEEDS ARE SO SEVERE,
HOMEMAKERS USUALLY ARE
UNABLE TO DO HIS PERSONAL
CARE.

Maureen says EVEN THOUGH
GOVERNMENT SPENDING ON HOME
CARE HAS INCREASED
SUBSTANTIALLY, IT HASN'T
KEPT PACE WITH DEMAND.
THE DEMAND IS GREATER
BECAUSE HOSPITALS ARE
DISCHARGING SICKER PEOPLE
SOONER AND HOME-CARE
AGENCIES HAVE TO GIVE
PRIORITY TO THE CRITICALLY
ILL OVER THE CHRONICALLY ILL.

Amani says IT USED TO BE YOU WENT
HOME JUST TO CON VA LENS AT
THE LATER STAGES OF AN
ILLNESS.
PATIENTS ARE NOW BEING SENT
HOME WITH SURGICAL BANDAGES
THAT THEY HAVE TO CHANGE,
WITH CATHETERS THAT HAVE TO
BE REMOVED AND INSERTED,
WITH MEDICATIONS THAT SHOULD
BE MONITORED CLOSELY WHEN
ADMINISTERED IN A HOSPITAL
AND SAID PATIENTS ARE BEING
ADMINISTERED AT HOME.

Rose says AT THIS POINT IN TIME I
HAVE NO HOME MAKING SERVICE
WHATSOEVER MONDAY THROUGH
FRIDAY I CARE FOR MY FATHER
ALONE.
I DO HAVE THREE NURSING
VISITS MONDAY THROUGH
FRIDAY.
THAT INVOLVES A VISIT OF 20,
30 MINUTES BY A NURSE.
MY FATHER IS... MY FATHER'S
CARE IS 12 HOURS, 24 HOURS,
SO THIS NURSING VISIT IS
JUST THAT, A VISIT.

Maureen says FOR YEARS
GOVERNMENTS HAVE TOLD US IT
IS CHEAPER AND MORE
COMPASSIONATE TO TREAT
PEOPLE IN THEIR HOMES.
THAT WE HAVE TO MOVE AWAY
FROM INSTITUTIONAL CARE TO
COMMUNITY CARE AND THE MONEY
THAT THE HOSPITALS SAVE
WOULD BE TRANSFERRED TO HOME
CARE.

Tim says RIGHT NOW 65 TO 70 percent OF
CCAC CLIENTS ARE COMING
STRAIGHT OUT OF HOSPITAL TO
US.
THE IMPLICATION IS THAT OVER
TIME MORE AND MORE SERVICES
FALL INTO OUR SECTOR.
THAT PUTS MORE AND MORE
PRESSURE ON OUR BUDGET.
EVEN THOUGH WE HAVE HAD
FUNDING INCREASES, THERE IS
STILL AN EXTRA PRESSURE ON
US.
WELL, WHAT HAPPENS WHEN WE
ARE UNDER PRESSURE.
WELL, UNFORTUNATELY, PEOPLE
THEN START LOOKING AT PEOPLE
WHO COME TO US FROM THE
COMMUNITY AND SAY, WELL,
THIS PERSON IS COMING OUT OF
HOSPITAL.
THEY GET TOP PRIORITY.
THAT PERSON IS LIVING IN THE
COMMUNITY, IF YOU HAVE GOT
LIMITED DOLLARS, PUT THEM ON
A WAITING LIST.

Rose says THE HOME CARE SYSTEM
STILL DOES NOT RECOGNIZE
THAT THE NEEDS OF THE
PATIENT SHOULD COME FIRST.
I FIND THAT THE PATIENT
NEVER COMES FIRST.

Tim says WE HAVE A COMPETITIVE
PROCESS WHERE NOT FOR PROFIT
AND FOR PROFIT AGENCIES FOR
PERSONAL SPORT WORKERS OR
HOMEMAKERS, NURSES,
OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIES,
SPEECH LANGUAGE, PATHOLOGY,
SOCIAL WORK, NUTRITION
COUNSELLING ALL COMPETE FOR
CONTRACTS WITH THE COMMUNITY
CARE ACCESS CENTRE.

SO WHAT ENDS UP HAPPENING
IS BASICALLY THE LOWEST
BIDDER GETS THE CONTRACT.
IN ORDER TO KEEP THE BIDS
THAT LOW, MORE OFTEN THAN
NOT WE FIND THAT IT IS
PRIVATE ENTERPRISES THAT CAN
PICK UP THE CONTRACTS AS
THEY DO SO BY PAYING THEIR
EMPLOYEES EXTRAORDINARILY
BADLY.

Maureen says LOWS DID PUT
HER FATHER INTO A NURSING
HOME BUT SHE HAD A TERRIBLE
EXPERIENCE AND BROUGHT HIM
HOME.

Rose says I HAVE A PROBLEM WITH
PEOPLE WHO TELL ME THAT WHAT
I HAVE DONE IS A CHOICE.
IF THE ONLY CHOICE IS TO
ACCEPT NEGLECT AND POSSIBLY
ABUSE OF MY ELDERLY PARENTS
IN AN ELDERLY CARE FACILITY,
IN ORDER TO GO ON WITH MY
LIFE, TO GO ON WITH MY
CAREER, AND THE ONLY OTHER
OPTION IS TO GIVE UP WITH MY
CAREER AND TAKE CARE OF THEM
MYSELF, I DON'T THINK THAT'S
A CHOICE.

Tim says WHAT DO WE REALLY EXPECT.
WHAT IS THE BARGAIN, WHAT IS
THE SOCIAL CONTRACT BETWEEN
THIS STATE AND THESE
INDIVIDUALS.
JUST A FEW YEARS AGO
INDIVIDUALS HAD THE SERVICES
PROVIDED AT THE STATES
EXPENSE, TAXPAYER'S EXPENSE
BY AN INSTITUTION.
NOW IT IS SHIFTED BACK INTO
THE HOME.
WELL, IDEALLY THAT IS WHERE
PEOPLE WANT TO BE AND A LOT
OF FAMILIES WANT TO HELP
WITH CARE.
THEY DON'T WANT TO BE
CRUCIFIED IN THE PROCESS.

Amani says WE NEED TO BE GUARANTEED
IT THAT WHEREVER YOU GO
ACROSS CANADA THAT A LEVEL
OF CARE WHICH ASK MEETING
CERTAIN STANDARDS THAT WE AS
A SOCIETY SHOULD SET WILL BE
MAINTAINED.
AND THAT IS NOT HAPPENING.

Rose says WHAT WE NEED TO DO IS TO
MAKE PEOPLE AWARE OF THIS
PROBLEM, THAT EVERYBODY IS
GOING TO FACE AS PART OF THE
ABLED POPULATION GROWS.
AND WE NEED TO BE AWARE SO
THAT WE CAN START TO MOVE
TOWARDS A RESOLUTION FOR
EVERYONE.

The health quiz appears on screen.

Maureen says TIME FOR OUR
HEALTH QUIZ, SCIENTISTS HAVE
RECENTLY FOUND A LINK
BETWEEN HIGH LEVELS OF THE
FATTY ACID DHA AND
PROTECTION AGAINST ALZHEIMER
DISEASE.
WHICH FOODS ARE RICH IN DHA,
RED MEAT, LEAFY GREEN
VEGETABLES OR FISH.
STAY TUNED.
THE ANSWER IS COMING UP
LATER ON YOUR HEALTH.

Now Maureen sits in the studio with two guests.

Maureen says WOMEN AREN'T
MEN WITH MENSTRUAL CYCLES,
THEY DON'T EXPERIENCE EVERY
DISEASE THE SAME WAY MEN DO,
SO IT'S IMPORTANT THAT DRUGS
AND THERAPIES BE TESTED ON
BOTH SEXES IN CLINICAL
TRIALS AND THAT THE RESULTS
BE SCREENED FOR GENDER
DIFFERENCES.
BUT THAT'S NOT HAPPENING
ACCORDING TO MY GUESTS,
DOCTOR DONNA STEWART IS CHAIR
OF THE WOMEN'S HEALTH AT THE
UNIVERSITY HEALTH NETWORK IN
TORONTO.
DOCTOR PAULA ROCHON IS A
SCIENTIST WITH THE INSTITUTE
FOR CLINICAL EVALUATIVE
SCIENCES BOTH WITH
THE UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO.
DOCTOR STUART, FIRST OF ALL,
HOW OFTEN ARE WOMEN INCLUDED
IN CLINICAL TRIALS OF DRUGS.

Donna is in her sixties, with short wavy strawberry blond hair. She wears glasses, a brown top and blazer, a floral scarf and a pair of earrings.

Paula is in her forties, with short straight brown hair. She wears a brown turtleneck and a midnight blue blazer.

The caption changes to "Doctor Donna Stewart. University Health Network."

Donna says WELL, WOMEN ARE USUALLY
INCLUDED IN CLINICAL TRIALS
OF DRUGS.
THE PROBLEM IS THAT THEY ARE
NOT INCLUDED IN LARGE ENOUGH
NUMBERS AND EVEN WHEN THEY
ARE, THERE OFTEN ISN'T A
GENDER ANALYSIS DONE OF THE
POTENTIAL DIFFERENCES.

Maureen says NOW I WOULD HAVE THOUGHT
THAT THE REASON THEY ARE NOT
INCLUDED IN LARGE NUMBERS IS
BECAUSE THERE WAS SOME KIND
OF MALE BIAS WITHIN THE
MEDICAL COMMUNITY BUT
THEY'RE WORRIED THAT WOMEN
ON CERTAIN DRUGS WILL GET
PREGNANT AND THAT THERE MAY
BE PROBLEMS WITH THE FOETUS,
HAS THIS HAPPENED.

Donna syas WELL, I THINK THERE HAS
BEEN THAT CONCERN.
AND CERTAINLY THESE
REGULATIONS WERE INITIALLY
PUT IN PLACE FOR BENEVOLENT
REASONS.
THE TROUBLE IS THE
BENEVOLENCE EXCLUDES US AND
NOT EVERY WOMAN IS PREGNANT
OR PLANNING TO GET PREGNANT
AND EVEN WOMEN AFTER
MENOPAUSE ARE EXCLUDED FROM
TRIALS OR HAVE BEEN EXCLUDE
INTERESTED TRIALS.
SO THAT INITIALLY GOOD
REASON, IN FACT, HAS
DISADVANTAGED WOMEN QUITE
SUBSTANTIALLY.

Maureen says WELL, HOW WOULD
YOU HANDLE THE WOMEN OF
CHILD BEARING AGE WHO, YOU
KNOW, IT WAS EXPLAINED YOU
SHOULDN'T GET PREGNANT BUT
WHAT IF THEY DO.
ISN'T THERE A VALID CONCERN.

Donna says I THINK THERE IS
DEFINITELY A VALID CONCERN
BUT I THINK THAT PREGNANT
WOMEN ALSO GET SICK AND SO
IT IS IMPORTANT TO HAVE SOME
IDEA OF HOW MANY OF THESE
DRUGS AFFECT PREGNANT WOMEN
AND NEW REGULATIONS THAT
HAVE JUST BEEN PASSED IN THE
UNITED STATES OR LAST COUPLE
OF WEEKS BY THE FDA ALLOW
THE INCLUSION OF WOMEN WHO
ARE PREGNANT, GIVEN THE
APPROPRIATE SAFEGUARDS.

Maureen says ALL RIGHT.
DID YOU DOCTOR ROCHON GIVE US
AN EXAMPLE OF WHY YOU THINK
IT'S IMPORTANT WOMEN BE
INCLUDED IN THESE TRIALS?
HOW DO THEY REACT
DIFFERENTLY TO A CERTAIN
DRUG.

The caption changes to "Doctor Paula Rochon. Scientist, ICES."

Paula says WELL, FOR EXAMPLE N HEART
DISEASE WHICH IS A CONDITION
THAT GENERALLY HAPPENS IN
WOMEN THAT ARE OLDER, FOR
EXAMPLE, WE'VE DONE WORK
LOOKING AT ALL PUBLICATIONS
OF DRUG TRIALS IN HEART
DISEASE, IN YOU KNOW A
FIVE-YEAR PERIOD IN THE
MAJOR MEDICAL JOURNALS AND
WHAT WE HAVE FOUND IS EVEN
THOUGH THIS IS A CONDITION
THAT AFFECTS BOTH MEN AND
WOMEN, THAT ON AVERAGE ONLY
ABOUT A QUARTER OF THE STUDY
PARTICIPANTS ARE WOMEN.
AND AS A RESULT OF THAT I
THINK WE JUST DON'T REALLY
KNOW HOW THESE DRUG
THERAPIES MAY ACT IN WOMEN.
WE JUST DON'T HAVE THAT KIND
OF INFORMATION.

Maureen says BUT WHAT
PHYSIOLOGICAL REASON WOULD
THERE BE, YOU KNOW, TO HAVE
THAT CONCERN, WHY WOULD THEY
ACT DIFFERENTLY IN WOMEN.

Donna says OH THERE ARE MANY REASONS
WHY THAT MIGHT BE THE CASE.
FOR EXAMPLE, WOMEN TEND TO
BE LIGHTER IN WEIGHT THAN MEN.
THEY TEND TO HAVE MORE FAT
AND LESS MUSCLE, IN GENERAL,
THAN MEN DO.
THE AFFECTS OF OESTROGEN
PRODUCED BY THE WOMEN'S OWN
BODY OR THAT SHE MAY BE
TAKING AS AN ORAL
CONTRACEPTIVE MAY AFFECT IT.
SO THERE ARE MANY REASONS
WHY THERE MAY BE DIFFERENT
IN MEN AND WOMEN.

Maureen says DOCTOR ROCHON YOU
WANTED TO SPEAK.

Paula says I AGREE BUT I THINK THERE
ARE OTHER THINGS AS WELL.
WHEN YOU LOOK AT CONDITIONS
LIKE HEART DISEASE, FOR
EXAMPLE, WOMEN TEND TO GET
IT OLDER THAN MEN DO AND SO
THEREFORE THERE IS AN AGE
FACTOR IN THERE ALSO WOMEN
OFTEN TAKE MORE OTHER
MEDICATIONS THAN MEN DO SO
THEY MAY BE MORE AT RISK FOR
INTERACTIONS AND OTHER
PROBLEMS RELATED TO DRUG
THERAPIES SO I THINK THERE
ARE A LOT OF DIFFERENT
REASONS WHY, IT IS IMPORTANT
TO LOOK AT MEN AND WOMEN
DIFFERENTLY.

Maureen says IF A HUSBAND
AND WIFE ARE BOTH AT RISK OF
HEART DISEASE ARE WE SAYING
THAT HE SHOULD TAKE AN
ASPIRIN A DAY BUT SHE
SHOULDN'T BECAUSE WE HAVEN'T
TESTED THAT THERAPY ON
WOMEN.
DOCTOR STUART.

Donna says WELL, I THINK THEY BOTH
SHOULD BUT ARE YOU RIGHT,
THE WHOLE BUSINESS OF
ASPIRIN AS A PREVENTION FOR
HEART DISEASE WAS TESTED
ONLY ON MEN, 12,000 MALE
PHYSICIANS SO WE REALLY
DON'T KNOW FOR SURE THAT
WOMEN SHOULD BE TAKING IT.
THERE IS NOW BETTER EVIDENCE
THAT IT IS GOOD FOR WOMEN
AND MEN BUT INITIALLY THERE
WAS NO EVIDENCE AT ALL FOR
WOMEN.

Maureen says IT IS NOT JUST A MATTER
OF INCLUDING WOMEN IN THE
TRIALS, YOU WANT TO SEE THE
DATA ANALYZED ACCORDING TO
GENDER, IS THAT HAPPENING.

Donna says WELL, THERE IS INCREASING
EVIDENCE THAT PEOPLE ARE
GETTING A LITTLE BETTER AT
RECRUITING WOMEN INTO TRIALS,
PARTLY BECAUSE THE UNITED
STATES PASSED REGULATIONS
THAT THEY WON'T FUND DRUG
STUDIES UNLESS THEY DO
INCLUDE WOMEN AS SUBJECTS
BUT THERE IS ALSO EVIDENCE
THAT IN SPITE OF RECRUITING
THEM INTO THE TRIALS, THEY
ARE NOT ANALYZING TO LOOK
FOR GENDER DIFFERENCES.
AND THIS IS A BIG PROBLEM.

Maureen says AND YOU,
DOCTOR ROCHON SIT AROUND THE
TABLE ON HOSPITAL BOARDS
WHEN THEY TALK ABOUT DOING
THESE DRUG TRIALS.
WHAT EXCUSES DO YOU HEAR
AROUND THE TABLE FOR NOT
ANALYZING THE DATA ACCORDING
TO GENDER.

Paula says WELL, I MEAN I GUESS
THERE ARE LOTS OF REASONS
WHY IT MIGHT BE DIFFICULT TO
INCLUDE WOMEN IN CLINICAL
TRIALS.
BUT I THINK IT DOESN'T
REALLY MATTER WHAT THOSE
REASONS ARE IN A SENSE.
I THINK YOU HAVE TO TRY TO
FIND WAYS TO OVERCOME IT I
THINK THE NIH IN THE UNITED
STATES HAS DONE A WONDERFUL
JOB AT SORT OF MAKING IT
MANDATORY THAT YOU MUST
EXPLAIN WHY WOMEN ARE GOING
TO BE IN YOUR STUDY OR WHY
THEY ARE NOT GOING TO BE IN
YOUR STUDY.
AND IF IT IS A CONDITION YOU
ARE PLANNING TO STUDY WHERE
WOMEN HAVE THAT PROBLEM,
WOMEN HAVE TO BE INCLUDED IN
THE SAME SORT OF PROPORTION
THAT THEY WOULD BE AFFECTED
IN THE POPULATION.

Maureen says I'M STILL
CURIOUS ABOUT WHAT THEIR
REASONS ARE, HAVE HEARD ANY.

Donna says OH, ABSOLUTELY.
WE DID A STUDY ON THIS AND
WHAT THE INVESTIGATORS TOLD
US IS FIRST IT WOULD BE TOO
EXPENSIVE, SECOND IT WAS
HARD TO RECRUIT WOMEN AND
THIRD THEY DIDN'T WANT
MENSTRUAL CYCLE...

Maureen says WHAT DOES THAT MEAN.

Donna says THAT MEANS THAT MENSTRUAL
CYCLES COMPLICATED
SCIENTIFIC DATA BUT IT MAY,
BUT IF THEY ARE TAKE THE
DRUG WE SHOULD KNOW WHAT THE
PROBLEMS ARE.

Maureen says WHAT ABOUT THE
OTHER TWO CONCERNS, THAT
WOMEN ARE RESISTANCE TO
GOING INTO CLINICAL TRIALS.

Donna says WELL, WE FOUND THAT YOU
CAN RECRUIT WOMEN INTO
CLINICAL TRIALS IF YOU MAKE
THE TRIALS FRIENDLY TO
WOMEN.
IF YOU, FOR EXAMPLE, PROVIDE
BABY-SITTING SERVICES FOR
WOMEN WITH YOUNG CHILDREN,
IF YOU SCHEDULE THE
APPOINTMENTS AT REASONABLE
TIMES, FACILITATE TRANSPORT
AND YOU EXPLAIN THE
IMPORTANCE TO WOMEN OF WHY
IT IS IMPORTANT THAT WOMEN
BE IN THESE TRIALS.
THE EXPENSE IS AN ISSUE.
BUT IF ARE YOU GOING TO
MARKET DRUGS TO WOMEN AND
70 percent OF PHARMACEUTICALS IN
CANADA ARE MARKETED TO WOMEN
THAN SURELY THEY SHOULD BE
FOR WOMEN.

Maureen says I GUESS
TAMOXIFEN IS AN EXAMPLE OF A
DRUG WHERE THEY GOT A LOT OF
WOMEN TO SIGN UP FOR
CLINICAL TRIALS.
WITH BREAST CANCER I SUPPOSE
IT IS EASY TO SAY TO WOMEN
THIS IS IMPORTANT TO YOU, DO
YOU THINK DOCTOR ROCHON THAT IS
PART OF THE PROBLEM.

Paula says I THINK THAT IS MAYBE
PART OF THE PROBLEM.
I THINK WOMEN DON'T EVEN
SOMETIMES UNDERSTAND THAT
CONDITIONS ARE IMPORTANT TO
THEM.
FOR EXAMPLE, HEART DISEASE,
YOU KNOW, IF SOMETHING
AFFECTING MANY, MANY OLDER
WOMEN, THE LEADING CAUSE OF
DEATH IN FACT FOR OLDER
WOMEN AND ONLY ABOUT A THIRD
OF OLDER WOMEN UNDERSTAND
THAT.
SO I THINK THERE IS A BIG
EDUCATIONAL ROLE HERE TO
PLAY IN TERMS OF LETTING
WOMEN LEARN ABOUT WHAT
CONDITIONS ARE IN FACT
IMPORTANT FOR THEM TO KNOW
ABOUT.

Donna says AND WE'VE
RECENTLY RECRUITED 10,000
WOMEN INTERNATIONALLY FOR A
STUDY OF DRUGS IN HEART
DISEASE.
AND IN FACT THE WOMEN HAVE
BEEN ENTHUSIASTIC.

Maureen says SO IT CAN BE DONE.
I HAVE HEARD BOTH OF NEW
THIS INTERVIEW LAUD THINGS
GOING ON IN THE UNITED
STATES BY THE FDA AND NIH SO
I THINK THERE IS A CRITICISM
OF HEALTH CANADA COMING HERE.
DOCTOR STUART WHAT IS HEALTH
CANADA'S POLICY AS FAR AS
INCLUDING WOMEN.

Donna says WELL, HEALTH CANADA HAS
PUBLISHED WITH A GREAT DEAL
OF PROMPTING A STATEMENT
SAYING THAT IT IS IMPORTANT
TO TEST THESE DRUGS IN
WOMEN.
IN FACT, IT WOULD APPEAR
THAT THEY, ALTHOUGH THEY
HAVE PUBLISHED THIS
STATEMENT IN 1995, THEY HAVE
NOT MECHANISM TO ACTUALLY
ENFORCE IT OR TO EVEN TRACK
IT.
AND FOR THE LAST SEVEN YEARS
I HAVE BEEN TRYING TO GET
DATA FROM HEALTH CANADA TO
SHOW WHAT PERCENTAGE OF
WOMEN THESE DRUGS ARE BEING
TESTED IN.
AND IN FACT, THAT DATA IS
NEITHER COLLECTED NOR
MONITORED BY HEALTH CANADA.

Maureen says WHY DON'T I HEAR MORE
DOCTORS SPEAKING OUT ABOUT
THIS.
WHY DON'T I HEAR THEM SAY
I'VE GOT A LOT OF FEMALE
PATIENTS HERE AND I DON'T
KNOW IF THESE DRUG DOES THEM
ANY GOOD.

Paula says WELL, I THINK THAT IS AN
IMPORTANT QUESTION.
I THINK ONCE PEOPLE REALIZE
WHAT THE SITUATION IS I
THINK THAT WOULD BE EVEN
MORE INCLINED TO SORT OF ASK
THOSE KIND OF QUESTIONS.
I MEAN IT IS A VERY BIG
ISSUE.
AND I THINK WHAT YOU ARE
SAYING IS CORRECT AS WELL IT
IS ONE THING FORTH FUNDING
AGENCIES TO SAY YOU WON'T
GET FUNDED UNLESS YOU
INCLUDE WOMEN TO DOCUMENT
THAT BUT THERE IS A TRICKLE
DOWN EFFECT THAT YOU HAVE TO
MAKE SURE THAT WHEN YOU
PUBLISH THE STUDIES THAT ARE
YOU TALKING ABOUT THE WOMEN
IN THOSE STUDIES AND
PRESENTING THE DATA IN SUCH
A WAY THAT YOU CAN LOOK AT
THE WOMEN SEPARATELY FROM
THE MEN.
OTHERWISE IT IS JUST A TOTAL
LOST OPPORTUNITY.

Maureen says DOCTOR STUART, ANYTHING THE
AVERAGE WOMAN COULD DO TO
CHANGE THE SITUATION.

Donna says YES, I'M A BIG BELIEVER
IN EDUCATING WOMEN BECAUSE I
THINK THEY WILL BEGIN TO ASK
THE RIGHT QUESTIONS AND IN
THE UNITED STATES IT WAS
CLEAR IT WAS PRESSURE FROM
WOMEN THAT ACTUALLY GOT THE
REGULARS EVENTUALLY CHANGED.

Maureen says THANK YOU BOTH FOR THIS.

They both say THANK YOU.

Maureen says COMING UP.

Joe says NUTS ARE GOOD SOURCE OF
MAGNESIUM, EVEN CHOCOLATE
HAS SOME.

Maureen says JOE SCHWARCZ ON
MAGNESIUM.

The opening slate appears again.

Now Maureen stands next to a screen with the caption "Health digest. FAS."

Maureen says A COUPLE OF
STORIES OF PARTICULAR
INTEREST TO PREGNANT WOMEN
IN THIS WEEK'S HEALTH
DIGEST.
THE FOETAL ALCOHOL SYNDROME
SOCIETY IN THE YUKON WANTS
TO SEE A LAW THAT MAKES IT
ILLEGAL TO SELL BEER, WINE
OR LICK TORE PREGNANT WOMEN.
THE PROPOSED LAW WOULDN'T
PENALIZE PREGNANT WOMEN WHO
DRINK BUT WOULD REVOKE THE
LICENSES OF BARS AND LIQUOR
STORES CAUGHT SELLING THEM
SPIRITS.
FOETAL ALCOHOL SYNDROME OR
FAS CAN CAUSE DEVELOPMENTAL
DISABILITIES, AND PHYSICAL
DEFECTS IN CHILDREN BORN TO
MOTHERS WHO DRINK.

The caption on the screen changes to "Miscarriage."

Maureen says PREGNANT WOMEN RAISE THEIR
RISK OF MISCARRIAGE WHEN
THEY TAKE PAINKILLERS KNOWN
AS N SAIDS OR NON STEROIDAL
ANTI-INFLAMMATORIES LIKE
ASPIRIN.
THE DANISH STUDY IS THE
FIRST TO LINK THE
MISCARRIAGE TO THIS COMMON
CLASS OF DRUG.
RESEARCHERS ARE SUPPRESS
STRESSING THEY HAVE ONLY
FOUND AN ASSOCIATION BETWEEN
N SAIDS AND MISCARRIAGE, THEY
HAVEN'T DETERMINED WHETHER
IT IS A CAUSAL RELATIONSHIP
OR JUST AN ASSOCIATION
CAUSED BY ANOTHER DISEASE.

The caption on the screen changes to "Stings."

Maureen says SKIB TEST MAY HAVE FOUND A
SAFE WAY TO PREDICT WHETHER
SOMEONE HAS A LIFE
THREATENING ALLERGY TO BEE
AND WASP ESTIMATION LOOKING
FOR A GROUP OF PEOPLE WITH A
HISTORY OF ALLERGIC REACTION
TO ESTIMATION.
THEY FOUND THAT 12 OF THEM
HAD ELEVATED LEVELS OF AN
ENZYME KNOWN AS TRYPTASE,
MORE IMPORTANTLY, NINE OF
THE 12 OR 75 percent HAD SUFFERED A
SEVERE REACTION TO STINGS
COMPARED TO ONLY 28 percent OF THE
REST OF THE GROUP.
DOCTORS SAY THEY MAY BE ABLE
TO TREAT PATIENTS WITH
ELEVATED TRYPTASE LEVELS
WITH LIFELONG INJECTIONS OF
BEE OR WASP VENOM WHICH
COULD PREVENT THE IMMUNE
SYSTEM FROM OVERREACTING TO
A STING.

The quiz appears on screen again.

Maureen says AND NOW THE
ANSWER TO THIS WEEK'S QUIZ,
PEOPLE WITH HIGHER LEVELS OF
DHA IN THEIR BRAINS ARE LESS
LIKELY TO GET ALZHEIMER
DISEASE AND A GOOD SOURCE OF
DHA IS FISH, ESPECIALLY
SALMON, TROUT AND TUNA.

Maureen says DID YOU GET ANY
MAGNESIUM TODAY?
DO YOU KNOW WHERE TO GET
MAGNESIUM.
BETTER FIND OUT BECAUSE
ACCORDING TO JOE SCHWARCZ IT
IS ONE OF THE ESSENTIAL
MINERALS FOR GOOD HEALTH.

The scene changes to Joe Schwarcz standing in a lab.

A caption reads "Doctor Joe Schwarcz, Ph.D. Professor of Chemistry."

Joe is in his mid-forties, clean-shaven and with short wavy gray hair. He wears a black suit, a black shirt and a silver gray tie.

He holds a toy car and says YOU HAVE HEARD OF
MAGAZINE WHEELS, THE MAG
STANDS FOR MAGNESIUM.
THEY WILL NOT RUST.
GREAT, BUT MAGNESIUM IS
IMPORTANT FOR HUMAN FUNCTION
AS WELL.
ENOUGH TALKING ABOUT CHEWING
ON MAGNESIUM WHEELS.
WE'RE TALKING ABOUT THE
IONIC FORM OF MAGNESIUM SUCH
AS IS AVAILABLE IN MAGNESIUM
SUPPLEMENTS, MAGNESIUM
GLUCONATE, MAGNESIUM SULFATE
AS ONE FINDS IN EPSOM SALTS,
THAT IS WHAT WE ARE TALKING
ABOUT.
WHY IS IT SO IMPORTANT IN
BECAUSE IT IS PART AND
PARCEL OF ABOUT 300 ENZYMES
IN THE HUMAN BODY.
AND ENZYMES ARE RESPONSIBLE
FOR ALL KINDS OF THINGS.
WE KNOW, FOR EXAMPLE THAT
MAGNESIUM IS IMPORTANT IN
THE FUNCTION OF THE HEART,
IN BONE FORMATION, IN THE
FUNCTIONING OF THE NERVOUS
SYSTEM, ALL OF THESE REQUIRE
MAGNESIUM.
IF THERE IS A DEFICIENCY OF
MAGNESIUM WE HAVE ALL KINDS
OF POSSIBLE EFFECTS RANGING
WERE IRRITABILITY TO TWINGE
SENSATION IN OUR MUSCLES AND
EVEN TO THE IRREGULAR
HEARTBEAT.
STUDIES HAVE SHOWN FOR
EXAMPLE THAT POPULATIONS
THAT CONSUME A LOT OF SOFT
WATER LOW IN CALCIUM AND
MAGNESIUM HAVE AN INCREASED
CHANCE OF HEART DISEASE IT
IS ALSO INTERESTING TO NOTE
THAT SOMETIMES AFTER A HEART
ATTACK PHYSICIANS WILL USE
MAGNESIUM COMPOUNDS BECAUSE
IT HAS AN EFFECT TO DILATE
BLOOD VESSELS AND ALSO TO
REGULATE THE HEARTBEAT SO
THERE IS NO DOUBT WE NEED AN
ADEQUATE SUPPLY OF MAGNESIUM
IN OUR DIET.
LUCKILY, IT IS NOT HARD TO
GET MAGNESIUM IN OUR DIET.
EITHER BY DINING ON PLANTS
OR ANIMALS THAT HAVE DINED
ON PLANTS.
NUTS OF ALL KINDS ARE VERY
GOOD COURSES OF MAGNESIUM,
EVEN CHOCOLATE HAS SOME.
IN SOME CASES PHYSICIANS
WILL ACTUALLY SUGGEST
SUPPLEMENTS OF MAGNESIUM SO
PATIENTS WHO SUFFER FROM
FIBROMYALGIA IT SEEMS TO
HAVE SOME AFFECT THERE AND
ALSO RECENT STUDIES SHOW IT
CAN HELP REDUCE BLOOD
PRESSURE.
SO THOSE ARE THE KIND OF
CASES WHERE YOU MAY WANT TO
ASK ABOUT MAGNESIUM
SUPPLEMENTS.
THERE ANOTHER VERY
INTERESTING WAY OF TAKING
MAGNESIUM SUPPLEMENTS
DISCOVERED BY AFRICAN
NATIVES MANY YEARS AGO.
IT TURNS OUT THAT TERMITE
DROPPINGS ARE HIGH IN
MAGNESIUM AND THEY MAKE
THESE LITTLE BALLS OF
CONCENTRATED TERMITE
DROPPINGS AS A SOURCE OF
MAGNESIUM IN ORDER TO
ALLEVIATE TIREDNESS.
SO THE SAME TO YOU, I THINK
I WOULD RATHER RELY ON SO IA
BEANS FOR MY... SOYA BEANS
FOR MY SUPPLEMENTS.

Maureen says THANKS, JOE.
REMEMBER YOU WILL FIND
TRANSCRIPTS OF ALL OF JOE'S
HERBAL ADVICE AVAILABLE ON
OUR WEB SITE AT
WWW.TVO.ORG/YOURHEALTH.
AND NEXT WEEK WHEN ARTISTRY
MEETS MEDICINE.

A man in his early thirties says YOU KNOW YOU HAVE GOT IT
RIGHT WHEN YOU HOLD IT IN
YOUR HAND AND CAN SEE THE
PERSON LOOKING BACK AT YOU
AND YOU GO, THAT IS WHO IT
IS.
THAT IS WHEN YOU KNOW YOU'VE
GOT IT RIGHT.

Maureen says THE AMAZING PROSTHETICS
THEY ARE MAKING TO REPLACE
EARS, NOSES AND EYES.
THAT IS NEXT WEEK ON YOUR
HEALTH.
I'M MAUREEN TAYLOR.
JOIN US THEN.

A slate appears with the caption "Email: yourhealth@tvo.org. Fax: 416-484-4519. Mail: Box 200, Station Q. Toronto, Ontario. M4T 2T1."

Music plays as the end credits roll.

Executive producer: Patricia Ellingson.

Producer: Cathy Perry.

Director: Michael Smith.

CEP Local 72m.

A production of TVOntario.

Copyright 2001. The Ontario Educational Communications Authority.

Watch: Show #22