What is the Fountain of Health?
The Fountain of Health Initiative for Optimal Aging is one of the first educational initiatives of its kind in the world. The Fountain of Health (FoH) translates current science of healthy aging, wellbeing and resilience, and offers practical tools to improve health outcomes over the lifespan-- for use by the public and by clinicians.
Our Mission: The FoH aims to help people become aware of the need to prepare for long and healthy lifespans. The Fountain of Health (FoH) is offering leadership of a national movement for optimal aging by:
- Raising public awareness about the science of healthy aging, and practical steps that promote resilience, emotional wellbeing and health over the lifespan.
- Developing clinical tools for health professionals to use with patients to promote changes in outlook and health behaviours. See Clinicians' Corner.
- Providing a Speakers’ Bureau of national experts on topics of resilience, emotional well-being and healthy aging. See Speakers’ Bureau.
- Contributing to international research through the World Aging and Brain Health Institute, fostering collaborative research in optimal aging and brain health. See Our People.
- Providing international leadership in Positive Psychiatry through the World Psychiatric Association.
Is the Fountain of Health for You?
The Fountain of Health is for everyone-- including you! The Fountain of Health Initiative targets the general public, and especially those at increased risk of health issues with aging. If you are 50 and older, it is crucial to know that current science shows outlook and lifestyle patterns in mid-life can determine how successfully you age! For a healthier future, go to the main page to watch the FoH video, Take the FoH Quiz to find out where you are starting from, then visit the Optimal Aging section to set a small goal.
The FoH also aims to engage health care providers in evidence based health promotion. FoH provides practical clinician tools to assist patients to set and meet health goals, for use in the busy office practice. Please visit Clinicians’ Corner for more information.
The FoH was founded in 2010 by the Geriatric Psychiatry Program at Dalhousie University in the Nova Scotia Health Authority. Led by Dr. Keri-Leigh Cassidy, Associate Professor of Geriatric Psychiatry and Clinical Academic Director of Dalhousie Geriatric Psychiatry, the FoH is a non-profit organization based in Nova Scotia, with multiple provincial, national and international partners. See our Provincial Team, National Team and Our Partners.
The Fountain of Health is a pioneer initiative in Canada of a new branch in medicine called “Positive Psychiatry” – positive psychiatry of aging is dedicated to the science and practice of enhancing positive psychosocial health and wellbeing over the lifespan. Positive Psychiatry of Aging strives to understand and assess the underlying biological underpinnings of positive psychosocial characteristics in late life, and to develop psychosocial/ behavioral and biological interventions to enhance mental health and wellbeing with age.
While Nova Scotia is already famous for having the highest ocean tides in the world (see photo below), the province is also now leading Canada’s “rising tide” of population aging having the “oldest” provincial population in Canada (17.5% over 65 years in 2016). Dalhousie University is home to world-class researchers in geriatrics, resilience, successful aging and psychotherapy, and the Nova Scotia Health Authority is a world leader in progressive health promotion and innovative care delivery. Given this, Nova Scotia is an appropriate place to offer leadership in optimal aging in Canada.
Nova Scotia: Highest Tides in the World
The Fountain of Health Initiative has evolved in phases over the past five years: