CANADA AM Presents a Special Week-Long Series: LIVING WITH ALZHEIMER’S, January 19-22 on CTV

— January 14, 2015

– Victor Garber, Olivia Chow, Jann Arden, and more join national conversation on the medical and social impacts of the progressive and degenerative disease –
– CANADA AM hosts special Town Hall and concurrent Live Web Chat, Jan. 22 –

“I loathe watching them misplace every single thing…but they are happy. They are so good humoured and light hearted, positive, faithful, and easy going. I am the only one freaking out. I need to tear a page out of their book and just calm the hell down.”

Jann Arden, on the struggles of Alzheimer’s and aging parents

TORONTO (January 14, 2015) – The numbers are staggering: more than one in seven Canadians over the age of 65 live with Alzheimer’s Disease – 72% of them women. Beginning Monday, Jan. 19, CANADA AM delivers LIVING WITH ALZHEIMER’S, a comprehensive four-day series exploring the medical and social aspects of the fatal disease, including the symptoms, treatments, potential cures, high cost of care, and the need for a national strategy. Airing on CTV, CTV News Channel, the CTV GO app, and the CTV News GO app, experts join a diverse range of Canadian voices throughout the series, including actor Victor Garber, former NDP MP and Toronto City Councillor Olivia Chow, and award-winning singer-songwriter Jann Arden, as they explore the Alzheimer’s from both medical and very personal perspectives. The series culminates on Thursday, Jan. 22 with a live Town Hall and simultaneous, interactive web chat at Viewers are invited to submit their questions and personal stories in advance of the broadcast at “Alzheimer’s is a disease that touches all of us in some way. It’s a national issue - one that puts enormous strain on Canada’s healthcare system and families nationwide,” said Lis Travers, Vice-President and Executive Producer, CANADA AM. “It’s time to cast a national spotlight and explore the personal and societal impacts of this terrible disease.” CANADA AM’s week-long LIVING WITH ALZHEIMER’S series features: Monday, Jan. 19: Inside the Body
  • Why We Need to Care About Alzheimer’s: Mimi Lowi-Young, CEO of the Alzheimer Society of Canada, presents a snapshot of the disease in Canada today, and why the country must work together to make it a priority.
  • The Latest Research: CANADA AM medical contributor Dr. Marla Shapiro shares the latest in Alzheimer’s research.
  • The Young Face of Alzheimer’s: CANADA AM’s Beverly Thomson talks to Moira Courtenay, a mother diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at age 50, and her daughter Kathleen Fraschetti (23), who is struggling to maintain the care required. The two are subjects in the revealing, feature-length documentary Much Too Young, which chronicles the lives of five Canadian families dealing with early onset Alzheimer’s. Thomson also speaks to the documentary’s filmmaker Chris Wynn, who experienced the devastating effects of the disease after his father was diagnosed.
  • Fitness and Alzheimer’s: McMaster University’s Jennifer J. Heisz shares how exercise can help prevent Alzheimer’s, while fitness expert Libby Norris demonstrates easy ways to include fitness into a daily routine.
Tuesday, Jan. 20: Inside the Family
  • Victor Garber: The Canadian actor shares his personal experience with the disease and his transformation into a lifelong Alzheimer’s advocate.
  • Parenting the Parents: CANADA AM hosts a special parenting panel featuring former NDP MP and Toronto City Councillor Olivia Chow and award-winning Canadian singer Jann Arden as they share their personal stories caring for parents suffering from Alzheimer’s and dementia. The segment also features Dr. Michael Gordon, co-author of Parenting Your Parents, looking at the challenges of a son or daughter being forced into the role of parent.
Wednesday, Jan. 21: Disease in the Mind
  • Faye Jashyn joins CANADA AM to share the tragic experience of how her father’s increasingly violent behaviour due to Alzheimer’s lead to a death.
  • University of Toronto professor Lynn MacDonald shares findings on the causes and consequences of violent behaviour demonstrated by Alzheimer’s patients, as well as the phenomenon of wandering and homecare neglect.
  • The Power of Hope and Happiness: Baycrest Centre social worker Melissa Tafler joins Sabrina McCurbin of the Alzheimer Society of Toronto to share how the mysterious and miraculous effect of the arts – dance, music, storytelling, and sculpting – can help to slow the onset of Alzheimer’s.
Thursday, Jan. 22: Town Hall – Disease in Our Lives
  • The Race for a Cure and Drug Trials: Dr. Sharon Cohen of the Toronto Memory Program introduces one of many people racing against time to participate in clinical studies of unproven medications, hoping to find a cure.
  • CANADA AM hosts a live, interactive Town Hall dedicated to those living with Alzheimer’s. The special discussion features a comprehensive panel of experts responding to questions in real time while also contributing to a simultaneous, interactive web chat at CANADA AM’S Town Hall and web chat feature contributions from:
    • Judith Wahl, a financial expert who will assess the cost of care.
    • Linda Jackson, a social worker specializing in advising families on caregiving techniques.
    • Jay Ingram, author and former host of DAILY PLANET whose recent book, The End of Memory, traces the history of Alzheimer’s from its original discovery to present day.
    • oDr. Lili-Naz Hazrati, a leading Alzheimer’s researcher chronicles the journey from diagnosis to care.
    • Mimi Lowi-Young, CEO of Alzheimer Society of Canada.
    • oDr. Sharon Cohen of the Toronto Memory Clinic.
    • Rick Lauber, author of Caregiver’s Guide for Canadians.
    • John Mann of Spirit of the West – recently diagnosed at age 51 with early onset Alzheimer’s – along with his wife, Jill Daum.
CANADA AM with Beverly Thomson, Marci Ien, and Jeff Hutcheson airs weekdays beginning at 6 a.m. ET on CTV, CTV News Channel, the CTV GO app, the CTV News GO app, and on the CTV Mobile channel on Bell Mobile TV. Visit CANADA AM online at for full episodes, top stories, CANADA AM extras, daily show info, featured recipes, book reviews, and contributor gift ideas. Viewers can also watch the best of the week’s segments with a special weekly episode, airing Saturdays at 8 a.m. ET. SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS: Twitter: @CTVCanadaAM @BDThomson @JeffHutcheson @MarciIen



- CTV -


CANADA AM is Canada’s national morning newsmagazine. Since its launch in 1972, CANADA AM has brought Canadians a unique blend of hard news and lifestyle stories, featuring in-depth interviews with top newsmakers, celebrities and musical stars. Lis Travers is the Vice-President and Executive Producer for CANADA AM and Wendy Freeman is the President of CTV News.


Press Room

Patricia Garcia

Manager, Communications

Elysia Circelli

Publicist, CTV