The First Nations Health Authority says Indigenous health is improving in the province.
However, Dr. Evan Adams, Chief Medical Officer for the Authority says while life expectancy and many other health indicators are getting better, they are not getting better at the same rate as they are for other British Columbians.
“We did see this inequity between First Nations and other residents of British Columbia as far as infant mortality, diabetes, youth suicide so we’ve pledged amongst ourselves, the federal government, the provincial government, and First Nations to look at these issues and address them and at the same time monitor them to see how we are doing.”
Adams says there are a couple of factors that need to be addressed that are pretty core that could help First Nations health.
He says the health system needs to be safer and more responsive and one that First Nations people feel they can trust.
Adams says the Authority is also trying to add a holistic and traditional approach to health and well-being.
He says traditional medicine can be incorporated because it is acceptable and fairly inexpensive compared to Western medicine.