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Indigenous health is a priority for the Royal College

On October 26, 2017, the Royal College’s Council endorsed a resolution proposed by the Indigenous Health Committee of the Royal College (IHC) to include Indigenous health across all residency training programs, a step towards fulfilling the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action, including numbers 23 and 24.

These Calls to Action focus on the education of health care providers to deliver culturally safe care.

If Indigenous health is to improve, all allies and institutions must respect Indigenous Peoples’ right of self-determination to govern and choose a culturally safe health care system that works for all First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities.

The IHC, an independent body that comprises Indigenous physicians, scholars and other health care professionals, led the development of two flagship documents that underpin the Royal College’s actions to improve Indigenous health.

  • The Indigenous Health Primer (2019) provides core information about Indigenous health through stories and case studies of Indigenous experiences and essential knowledge for Fellows, health care providers, learners and educators in caring for Indigenous Peoples.

    Download the primer (pdf).

  • The Indigenous Health Values and Principles Statement, Second Edition (2019) examines the values pertaining to Indigenous health and bridges these values to the CanMEDS framework with actionable principles that guide culturally safe health care.

    Download the Indigenous Health Values and Principles Statement (pdf).

Additionally, the Royal College recommends the following resources to all on a journey to become a culturally safe provider to Indigenous patients: The San’yas Indigenous Cultural Safety online training:

  • Increases knowledge of the history of Indigenous people in Canada
  • Builds self-awareness of biases and assumptions
  • Strengthens the skills of those who work both directly and indirectly with Indigenous people to ensure they have access to culturally safe care
  • The overall goal is to improve the health and well-being of Indigenous people and close the health gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous British Columbians

Core Indigenous Cultural Safety Health training is designed for health authority and Ministry of Health employees as well as other professionals working in the health care field. This training was developed in British Columbia, but portions of the training are relevant across Nations.

This training is designated as an accredited self-assessment program by the Royal College for up to 8.0 section 3 credits as defined by the maintenance of certification (MOC) Program.

See the San’yas homepage for further detail:

In Ontario, San’yas offers two modules which are accredited by the Royal College’s MOC Program:

  • Ontario Core Indigenous Cultural Safety Health
    • Designed for people who work in health and focuses on issues that are specifically relevant for health care professionals working with Indigenous people in Ontario. Learning is self-paced over an eight-week window and typically takes between ten and twelve hours to complete, though this could be longer or shorter depending on your style of learning.
  • Enhanced Ontario Core Indigenous Cultural Safety Health
    • This version has new content to support deeper learning about Indigenous cultural safety at an organizational level. Additional content has been added to support participants who may be witnessing bias, stereotyping and discrimination in their work settings and how they can respond and interrupt it. Due to the enhanced nature, participants will be provided ten weeks to complete the training (this is an extension on the standard eight weeks).

Again, this training is an accredited Self-Assessment Program eligible for up to 8.0 section 3 credits as defined by the MOC Program.

For more information please see:

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