Events – AGE

Congratulations to Patti Boucher, AGE Executive Director, on her Retirement

Patti Boucher retires at the end of this week after a very successful and rewarding 42-year career in healthcare, initially nursing at the point-of-care and for the last 25 years in senior healthcare leadership positions.

The AGE team thanks Patti for her steadfast belief in the importance of dementia education for staff at the point-of-care and her careful stewardship of AGE’s growth and success over the past five years. As she begins this exciting new stage in life we wish her happiness (and time to sit down to write the rest of that family recipe book she’s been itching to complete!)

Patti reflects on her time at AGE, including its growth and success as a social enterprise, with thank-yous to AGE’s partners and stakeholders. Read her Goodbye Blog here.

(Photo: Patti speaks at the ORCA Road Show)




BSO Releases Update to the Behavioural Education and Training Support Inventory (BETSI) Tool

AGE Executive Director, Patti Boucher, chaired a committee that developed a revised Behavioural Education & Training Support Inventory (BETSI) tool. The updated BETSI includes representations of four of AGE’s dementia curricula.

The tool informs leadership decisions on how to provide staff members with appropriate education that prepares them to care for older adults with responsive behaviours in various contexts.

During the process of developing this document, the BETSI Working Group received valuable feedback from many key partners and wishes to particularly acknowledge contributions from those who responded to the BETSI User Survey (August 2017), the BSO Provincial Steering Committee, the BSO Operations Committee, the BSO Knowledge Translation & Communications Advisory and the BSO Knowledge to Practice Community of Practice. In addition, the BETSI Working Group wishes to thank all of the Program Representatives for taking the time to submit applications for inclusion into the updated BETSI.

The updated BETSI can be found here.

Questions or feedback pertaining to the BETSI can be directed to or call 1-855-276-6313.


The BETSI Working Group

Patti Boucher – Executive Director, Advanced Gerontological Education (Chair)

Monica Bretzlaff – Manager, BSO Provincial Coordinating Office & North East BSO, North Bay Regional Health Centre

Faith Malach – Executive Director, Behaviour Supports & Memory Care Programs, Baycrest Health Sciences

Maureen O’Connell – Psychogeriatric Resource Consultant, North Simcoe Muskoka Specialized Geriatric Services

Patti Reed – Program Manager, BSO Central LHIN

Tiffany Symes – Waterloo Wellington Vulnerable Seniors Community Seniors Lead, CMHA (Member until May 2018)

Katelynn Viau – Project Coordinator, BSO Provincial Coordinating Office, North Bay Regional Health Centre (Lead Collaborator)

AGE Sponsors #CGNA2019

AGE is very proud to be a Bronze Sponsor of the 20th Biennial Conference of the Canadian Gerontological Nursing Association. This year’s conference is May 2 – 4th in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. AGE will be attending and presenting at the conference. The CGNA’s theme for 2019 is “Older Persons Climbing Mountains: Journeys and Transitions.”

Learn more about #CGNA2019 here

Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing: The experience of hospital staff in applying GPA to dementia care.

Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing
Original Article

Wiley Online Library.


First published: 18 November 2018


This article has been accepted for publication and undergone full peer review but has not been through the copyediting, typesetting, pagination and proofreading process, which may lead to differences between this version and the Version of Record. Please cite this article as doi: 10.1111/jpm.12504




Hospital staff lacks knowledge and skills in dementia care. There is a need to understand how person‐centered care theory can be operationalized in staff’s practices to improve dementia care.


To describe the staff’s experiences of learning and applying the Gentle Persuasive Approaches (GPA) to enact person‐centered care in a hospital.


Mixed methods, including post-education survey and focus groups, were used. Thematic analysis was conducted to identify themes that describe participants’ experiences.


310 staff and leaders in a hospital participated in the GPA education and completed a posteducation survey (n=297). After one year, two follow‐up focus groups were conducted with interdisciplinary staff (n=24) across medicine and mental health programs. Our analysis identified three themes to enable person‐centered care: (1) changing attitudes, (2) changing practices, and (3) changing conditions.


This study contributes to the literature by providing evidence of how an education program was implemented in a large Canadian hospital to build capacity for dementia care. Joint education for interprofessional staff offers value in enabling person‐centered care.


Mental health nurses are in position to lead dementia education and advocate for person‐centered care in hospitals. Staff need structural support to engage in team learning for practice improvement.

This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.




Thank you to all organizations who took the time to submit their application for this award. All submissions were outstanding. At this time, we would like to recognize the four organizations with the highest scores and one with an Honourable Mention.

Highest Overall Score

Vancouver Coastal Health Authority, British Columbia

With Distinction

Alzheimer Society of Windsor-Essex County, Ontario in the category of Community Care

Halton Healthcare, Ontario in the category of Acute Care/Hospital

Sherbrooke Community Centre, Saskatchewan in the category of Long-Term Care

Honourable Mention

The Government of Nunavut

AGE Produces Series of Eight Podcasts

New series of podcasts disseminates findings from our “Pilot Study of an Innovative Online Dementia Education Intervention for Multi-Disciplinary Post-Secondary Health Care Students in Ontario.”

Staff prep for filming of new series of AGE podcasts

The AGE team continues to work with Jacky Au Duong, a knowledge mobilization specialist from the Centre for Communicating Knowledge at Ryerson University. Over the course of the summer, we have filmed a series of eight 15-minute podcasts that will summarize the focus, findings and impact of the interprofessional pilot study (noted above) to evaluate a blended classroom approach to GPA program delivery (GPA eLearning followed by Geriatric Skills Day Workshop). Funded for podcasts provided by the Retired Teachers of Ontario Foundation (RTOF).

The AGE Podcast series will be posted on the AGE website and the Retired Teachers of Ontario Foundation (RTOF) website in Fall 2018.


Principal Investigators on Study: (Bold text indicates members of AGE) Schindel Martin, L., Woo, P. (Associate Professor, Division of Geriatric Medicine, Department of Medicine, McMaster University) Co-Investigators: Cowan, D. (Medical Director, Health for Older Adults Program, St. Joseph’s Centre for Ambulatory Health Services), McLelland, V., Miller, P. (Physiotherapist), Newman, K. (Assistant Professor, Daphne Cockwell School of Nursing, Ryerson University), Rose, D. (Associate Professor, Daphne Cockwell School of Nursing, Ryerson University); Student Investigators: Ashbourne, J., Ashley, M., Julian, P., McNee, M., Vieira Zamora, F.

Spotlight on GPA Award Winner, Parkview Services for Seniors

Congratulations Parkview Services for Seniors, winner of a 2016 | 2017 GPA Leadership Excellence in Person-Centred Care award. “GPA builds strong positive relationships between residents and staff and instills confidence in staff’s abilities working with residents,” says Maria Wittenbols, Program Aid and GPA Certified Coach at Parkview. Learn more about GPA implementation at Parkview here.

Gentle Persuasive Approaches in Dementia Care (GPA®)
GPA is a multi-disciplinary evidence-based dementia care curriculum that equips point-of-care providers and students with the knowledge, skills and confidence to apply a respectful, person-centred approach when interacting with older adults with dementia. To date, Advanced Gerontological Education (AGE), developer of GPA, has trained 3,074 GPA Certified Coaches who have gone on to deliver the program to almost 300,000+ healthcare providers and students in more than 1,700 Canadian organizations.

Together, we are enhancing the care of older Canadians. Thank you  Parkview Services for Seniors in the Ontario communities of of Whitchurch | Stouffville for your ongoing passion and commitment to GPA’s person-centred model of care.

AGE as a Social Enterprise | Meeting a need that serves the greater good

For organizations thinking about becoming a social enterprise, we hope this blog is helpful.

For those unfamiliar with the term, a social enterprise is an organization that uses a for-profit business model to achieve very specific social objectives. These objectives must be the business’s primary purpose. Not all social enterprises are not-for-profit and not all not-for-profits are social enterprises. What we all have in common is a fundamental desire to make the world a better place. AGE has a foot in both worlds … Read the full blog here