Knowledge Resources & Publications

ISBN (Print) : 978-1-77368-211-2 | ISBN (Online) : 978-1-77368-212-9

Access to health services as a social determinant of First Nations, Inuit and Métis health

October 2019

Access to health services is widely acknowledged as a determinant of health. This fact sheet explores how accessibility, availability and acceptability of health services impact the health and health outcomes of Indigenous peoples across Canada. Although Canada boasts a universal health care system that is widely considered to be among the best in the world, Indigenous peoples continue to experience barriers to accessing health care. The fact sheet will examine some of the complexities that influence Indigenous peoples’ experiences and encounters with the health system including colonialism, geography, health systems, health human resources, jurisdictional issues, communications, cultural safety, and traditional medicines. In order to address the ongoing health disparities experienced by Indigenous peoples, the fact sheet concludes by providing strategies and innovations for improving their access to health services.

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