IdahoPTV Collaboration Supports Symposium on Aging

Idaho Public Television may be known for high-quality children’s programs like Curious George and Science Trek — but we also want to focus on other viewers along the age spectrum with programs that feed the spirit, educate and inform, and keep the mind sharp. That’s why we’re collaborating with Idaho State University’s Kasiska Division of Health Sciences and Honoring Choices Idaho to promote the 10th annual Thomas Geriatric Symposium.

The purpose of this collaboration is to provide greater public awareness of aging in Idaho and America, broaden the public’s perspective of the aging process, and provide pathways to improved health and well-being through special programming, news articles and sharing of statewide resources.

As part of the partnership, IdahoPTV will present three weeks of special programming, September 17 through October 6, focused on longevity, health care, protecting seniors online, and other issues related to aging (see our list of programs below).

Thomas Geriatric Symposium

The Thomas Geriatric Symposium is an annual conference that educates people about aging, health care choices and wellness. It provides greater awareness of the needs of older adults and educates people about their health care choices as well as the impact of eldercare on their lives and their communities.

The symposium will take place on the Idaho State University campuses at the Pond Student Union Ballroom in Pocatello and the ISU Meridian Health Science Center in Meridian on Friday, October 6. Registration begins at 8:30 AM and sessions will be held from 9 AM to 1 PM. The symposium is free to the public.

This year’s keynote theme is Healthy Aging and Nutrition: What’s on Your Plate? The sessions consist of a keynote address and breakout sessions that focus on a variety of health related, financial and life planning topics. The keynote address will be given by Dr. SeAnne Safaii-Waite, Associate Professor of Foods and Nutrition at the University of Idaho. Speakers’ presentations will occur at both the Meridian and Pocatello campuses and will be connected via video teleconference so all session can be viewed at both sites.  IdahoPTV’s Bruce Reichert will be among those presenting. Experiential activities will occur at both sites independently.

Through this collaboration we are able to discover and share resources that assist people in navigating the best possible means to improve or maintain their health as well as prepare health care directives. Honoring Choices Idaho, for instance, promotes advanced care planning conversations to ensure individuals get the care they choose at the end of life. They’ve also compiled this list of Idaho resources on aging, wellness, lifelong learning, and end-of-life preparation.

“Collaboration around a shared vision can result in great change,” says Stephanie Bender-Kitz from Honoring Choices Idaho. “We are proud to collaborate with Idaho Public Television and Idaho State University to catalyze conversations about the opportunities and challenges of longevity. Having conversations about what matters is what Honoring Choices Idaho is all about — and we hope that many individual and community conversations about living and aging are started as a result of IdahoPTV programs and the ISU symposium!”

ISU Clinical Professor Beth Ann Guzi says, “Idaho State University’s Kasiska Division of Health Sciences and the Thomas Geriatric Symposium partnership with Idaho Public Television and Honoring Choices Idaho is essential for providing greater awareness of the needs of older adults and educating people about their health care choices as well as the impact on their lives and their communities. Through this collaboration, we are able to discover and share resources that assist people in navigating the best possible means to improve or maintain their health as well as prepare health care directives. We are enthusiastic about the positive impact this partnership will have on the quality of life for people in our communities.”


Idaho Public Television is proud to enrich this collaboration with three weeks of programming on our Idaho and Plus Channels. Tune in September 17 through October 6 for the following specials:

Age Wise – An empowering look at issues facing today’’s seniors, this series examines what can and should be done to help older adults age better with insight from experts and everyday older adults who’ share their personal stories of success. Airs in five parts, September 18-22 and October 2-6 at 4:30/3:30 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts – An urgent wake-up call about the national threat posed by Alzheimer’s that illuminates the social and economic consequences for the country unless a medical breakthrough is discovered for this currently incurable disease. Airs September 26 at 7 PM on the Idaho Channel.

Alzheimer’s: The Caregiver’s Perspective – A variety of caregivers, family members and many others explain how they creatively navigate the frustrations, sorrows, and complications of caring for a loved one who can no longer function safely on their own. Airs September 24 at 6/5 PM and 10/9 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Capturing Grace – Reveals the hopes, fears and triumphs of a newly-forged community of world-renowned dancers and people with Parkinson’s disease as they work together to create a unique, life-changing performance. Airs October 1 at 6/5 PM and 10:30/9:30 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Coming of Age in Aging America – Grapples with questions raised by increased longevity and suggests that America’s social and economic institutions must adapt to a staggering demographic transformation where more than half of the world’s population will eventually be over the age of 50. Airs September 19 at 7 PM on the Idaho Channel, and September 26 at 6/5 PM and 10/9 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Cyber-Seniors – Follows the extraordinary journey of a group of senior citizens who take their first steps into cyberspace under the tutelage of teenage mentors. Airs September 23 at 5/4 PM and October 3 at 6/5 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Elder Abuse and Exploitation – Examines the causes behind geriatric mistreatment, neglect and exploitation, which is often underreported, lacks clear legal definition, and is complicated by ethical challenges. Airs September 29 at 8:30 PM on the Idaho Channel, and October 3 at 10:30/9:30 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Fleeced: Speaking Out Against Senior Financial Abuse – Examines the timely topic of elder financial exploitation including scams and predatory lending practices, identity theft, reverse mortgages, pyramid schemes, sweepstakes and “good-faith” payments. Airs September 18 at 9/8 PM and October 3 at 10/9 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Grey Ambition – An inspirational documentary about Canadian seniors who are taking their brain power to new levels long after retirement by being involved in the arts, volunteerism, education, entrepreneurship, and working in the business world. Airs October 1 at 5/4 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Grey Glory – An inspirational documentary about three Canadian seniors — a track-and-field star, a triathlete and a bodybuilder — who are pushing their bodies to the limit, redefining our perceptions of aging. Airs October 1 at 5:30/4:30 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

How to Stay Young – Investigates new research that could put the brakes on aging: foods that add years to your life, Alzheimer’s sufferers injected with young people’s blood, and a boy with Laron syndrome who could hold the key to curing aging. Airs in two parts: September 20 and 27 at 7 PM on the Idaho Channel, and September 22 and 29 at 6/5 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Living With Alzheimer’s and Dementia – Explores the effects these diseases have on individuals, families and communities by revealing the myths and stigmas that have hindered better living and caretaking and examining the heavy burden of costs associated with the diseases. Airs September 30 at 5/4 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Music for Life: The Story of New Horizons – What started as a 30-member band in Rochester, New York, more than 20 years ago has grown to a program that includes 10,000 senior musicians in 215 New Horizons bands across the world. Airs September 19 at 8/7 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

Nine to Ninety – The story of 89-year-old Phyllis Sabatini who lives with her daughter’s family, but when she sees the strain it puts on her daughter to care for everyone from nine to 90, she makes a radical decision to move into assisted living. Airs September 22 at 8:30 PM on the Idaho Channel.

Passing On – Explores the end of life through a series of compelling and sensitive stories that will engage viewers emotionally and provide valuable information about passing along dying wishes and planning for death. Airs September 26 at 8/7 PM on the Plus Channel, and October 3 at 7 PM on the Idaho Channel.

When I’m 65 – Challenges longstanding myths about retirement and living longer, and explores changing attitudes toward work, debt, housing and the financial realities of the 21st century. Airs September 24 at 5/4 PM and September 27 at 7/6 PM MT/PT on the Plus Channel.

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