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photo Family Matters
Coming Together for Alzheimer's
By Barbara Moscowitz, MSW, LICSW, Garrett Strang & Wendy McGrane Strang, MPH

Early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease can afford families much needed time to develop plans for coping with the profound emotional, physical, and financial changes the disease may bring. Family Matters brings to life the challenges families face upon receiving the diagnosis that a family member is forever changed, and that they must find new ways to relate and communicate within a family redefined by the disease.

Featuring Joanne Koenig Coste, MEd, author of the groundbreaking Learning to Speak Alzheimer's, and Barbara Moscowitz, MSW, LICSW, of the Geriatric Medicine Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital, this engaging program offers caregivers and family members some valuable guideposts along the frightening and humbling journey through Alzheimer's: learning about the illness and its treatments, planning for the challenges that await the family, restructuring the family system to adapt to the patient's changing needs, and learning the process of what Coste calls "habilitation," a practical and philosophical approach to understanding the language and behavior of the Alzheimer's patient.

Caregivers need to accept not only the changes in their loved one, but their own troubling and contradictory feelings as well. They will need to learn new kinds of communication, and how to listen to the emotions behind the failing words. Sometimes this will require entering the emotional world of the person with Alzheimer's, rather than always trying to pull him or her back into the "real" world. Support groups and social services can be enormously helpful but, most of all, families need to confront the challenge together. A Resource Journal is included with the program. From the Geriatric Medicine Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital.

DVD version has both closed-captions and audio description.

27 minutes
© 2006
Purchase $259 DVD
Order No. QA-455
ISBN (DVD) 1-57295-853-7
close captioned

Reviews
"Family Matters will be very helpful to health educators running family education or family support groups. The issues it raises will trigger and facilitate a lot of group discussion and interaction." Educational Media Reviews Online

Awards & Conference Screenings
National Health Information Awards, Merit Award
WORLDFEST, Gold & Silver Remi Awards
Freddie Awards, Freddie Award

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Sage: Celebrates the wisdom, experience, and creativity of our society's elders through portraits of a diverse group of active, engaged seniors pursuing their lifetime interests, and some new ones as well. Among those profiled is TV chef Julia Child.

Packrat: Compulsive hoarding has been linked to Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and dementia. This video profiles two families whose lives have been shaped by the "packrat," behavior of a family member.

Everyday Choices: Through the story of one young visiting nurse and her elderly patient, Gerardo, this challenging documentary explores personal, professional, and ethical dilemmas faced by nurses working in home care and community settings.

Alzheimer's Disease: Inside Looking Out: Through the stories of eight people with Alzheimer's disease, this touching video gives viewers a real and vivid sense of what it's like to experience the early stages of progressive memory loss.


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