How does Men’s Health Work?

When it comes to expectations for a healthy long life, men are falling behind women. There are many reasons for this. Many men avoid seeing the doctor unless something is broken, bleeding or seriously wrong. In health promotion we do a better job of reaching women than men but this is a gap we’re trying to bridge.

BCAHL, along with colleagues from the Centre of Excellence in Cancer Prevention at UBC, hosted a workshop series, Men’s Health Works to share BC’s successes and challenges in reaching out to men.

• Our Vancouver event brought together 100 people from a range of different fields to hear about the progress BC has made in talking to men about their health.
• In Prince George we gathered over 50 stakeholders from public health, First Nations and the academia to participate in a lively discussion around the issues.

We included Canadian experts on men’s health and wellness, leaders in northern and Aboriginal health, as well as practitioners in men’s health promotion.

Why the focus on men’s health? Because Canadian men are less healthy overall and less likely to engage in healthy behaviours. For example, women make up the vast majority of participants in workplace wellness programs – even in male-dominated workplaces.

Our Working on Wellness (WoW) project is trying to reach men in BC and the NWT through their workplaces – and it’s getting noticed. The messaging in these remote work camps is different from your typical public health announcements – asking men to “Take Care of Their Equipment – Like their Heart and Arteries”.

BC is leading the charge on men’s health promotion. Perhaps because of the work started by former Chief Medical Health Officer David Bowering, who asked “Where are the Men?”

If you didn’t make it to either event, you can still take part and follow-up with any questions you may have.

Below are the archived webcast, slides, and other resources from the Vancouver and Prince George workshops at

We hope by posting these materials that these workshops will spur on a larger discussion beyond those who were able to attend.

Please check back as we will be adding more material as it becomes available.

Webcast from Prince George Workshop (June 8, 2015) (Opening plenary by Dr. David Bowering and panel discussion)

Presentation Slides
Presentation slides – Dr. David Bowering
Presentation slides – Dr. Joan Bottorff, Sally Errey, and Kerensa Medhurst
Presentation slides – Holly Christian and Trevor Kehoe
Presentation slides – Drs. John Oliffe and Joan Bottorff
Presentation slides – Samantha Hartley-Folz and Fionna Blackman

BC Alliance for Healthy Living, Working on Wellness

Policies to Support Health Promotion in the Workplace – What’s There and What’s Needed (report)
Men’s Health Interventions: Strategic Considerations (report)

Canadian Men’s Health Foundation
Don’t Change Much campaign

Northern Health Authority
Where are the Men? (Report)
Men’s Health Matters Because Men Matter (report)
Rebuilding Strength: First Nations Men’s Health in Northern BC (report)
Supporting document for Rebuilding Strength: First Nations Men’s Health in Northern BC
QuitNow Men website

If you’d like more information about Working on Wellness (WoW), POWERPLAY, or WellnessFits, please contact:

Working on Wellness (WoW)

Joan L. Bottorff, PhD, RN, FCAHS, FAAN
Professor, School of Nursing, UBC Faculty of Health and Social Development
Director, Institute for Healthy Living and Chronic Disease Prevention

Canadian Cancer Society, BC and Yukon Division