The Fountain of Health: Bringing Seniors’ Mental Health Promotion into Clinical Practice

  • Vanessa Thoo Dalhousie University
  • Janya Freer Dalhousie University
  • Keri-Leigh Cassidy Dalhousie University
Keywords: seniors, mental health promotion, knowledge transfer, translation psychiatry



The Fountain of Health (FoH) initiative offers valuable evidence-based mental health knowledge and provides clinicians with evaluated tools for translating knowledge into practice, in order to reduce seniors’ risks of mental disorders, including dementia.


A presentation on mental health promotion and educational materials were disseminated to mental health clinicians including physicians and other allied health professionals either in-person or via tele-education through a provincial seniors’ mental health network. Measures included: 1) a tele-education quality evaluation form, 2) a knowledge transfer questionnaire, 3) a knowledge translation-to-practice evaluation tool, and 4) a quality assurance questionnaire.


A total of 74 mental health clinicians received the FoH education session. There was a highly significant (p < .0001) difference in clinicians’ knowledge transfer questionnaire scores pre- and post-educational session. At a two-month follow-up, 19 (25.7%) participants completed a quality assurance questionnaire, with all 19 (100%) of respondents stating they would positively recommend the FoH information to colleagues and patients. Eleven (20.4%) translation-to-practice forms were also collected at this interval, tracking clinician use of the educational materials.


The use of a formalized network for knowledge transfer allows for education and evaluation of health-care practitioners in both acquisition of practical knowledge and subsequent clinical behavior change.

Author Biographies

Vanessa Thoo, Dalhousie University
Department of Psychiatry, PGY-5
Janya Freer, Dalhousie University
Department of Psychiatry, Assistant Professor
Keri-Leigh Cassidy, Dalhousie University
Department of Psychiatry, Associate Professor
How to Cite
Thoo, V., Freer, J., & Cassidy, K.-L. (2015). The Fountain of Health: Bringing Seniors’ Mental Health Promotion into Clinical Practice. Canadian Geriatrics Journal, 18(4), 217-224.
Original Research