OTTAWA – Assembly of First Nations (AFN) Ontario Regional Chief Isadore Day, responsible for AFN’s national health portfolio, welcomes the opportunity for First Nations to participate in the planning of the national Health Accord renewal. The agreement was reached at a meeting between Indigenous leaders, federal Health Minister Jane Philpott and provincial and territorial health ministers yesterday in Vancouver, B.C.
“The First Nation health crisis cannot and will not go on,” said AFN Ontario Regional Chief Isadore Day. “This marks an historic moment that must prompt transformative change. Our peoples require, deserve and demand stable, sustainable and culturally appropriate access to health care no matter where they reside. We must all act now so that jurisdictional disputes no longer delay or deny care as this only leads to deteriorating health or, tragically, death. First Nations are taking action and all governments must take up this task in the spirit of reconciliation. We look forward to working together with all governments to improve the health and well-being of our people.”
Leaders from the AFN, the Métis National Council, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami and ministers from the federal, provincial, territorial governments committed to developing a formal process within the broader Health Accord discussion inclusive of First Nations, Métis and Inuit to better determine how provincial, territorial and federal governments can meet health needs in their respective health systems.
Federal, provincial and territorial ministers of health are meeting today in Vancouver to negotiate a new Health Accord with provinces and territories, including a long-term agreement on funding and setting national priorities on health care.