Quesnel is part of a research project to further enhance indigenous health in Northern BC.
Doctor Sarah de Leeuw says the idea is to try and make healthcare more attuned to indigenous people’s and indigenous communities’ realities.
She says that while it is valuable, it means more than just training more indigenous physicians and nurses…
“Although certainly recruitment of indigenous healthcare professionals into the Northern Health Authority in an incredible and unfolding as we speak endeavour, but it also means making folks who are already professionals in the healthcare system and industry in Northern BC understand more about indigenous communities and indigenous people.”
De Leeuw says they’re looking to do this gently over the next 5 to 6 years.
She says they have several partners, including Northern Health, that are helping out with this project.
De Leeuw says they would like to sort of roll out educational and resource opportunities for people across Northern BC…
“We would love to maybe host information sessions or resource sessions that any of the myriad of people who are healthcare professionals in places like Quesnel…and I really want to emphasize that includes social workers and nurses and physios and nurse practitioners and chiropractors and dentists, the whole kind of rich and vibrant culture that makes up healthcare in the north.”
De Leeuw says they’re not trying to re-invent the wheel but instead build on the existing strengths in the healthcare system.