Ontario Pledges $222 Million For First Nations Health Care

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TORONTO — Ontario will spend $222 million over three years to improve health care for First Nations people, especially in the north where the government says there are significant gaps in services.

There will also be annual, ongoing funding of $104.5 million for the First Nations health action plan, which will focus on primary care, public health, senior's care, hospital services and crisis support.

Health Minister Eric Hoskins says he wants to ensure indigenous people have access to more culturally appropriate care and improved outcomes.

eric hoskins
Ontario Health Minister Eric Hoskins speaks during a news conference after the first day of a meeting of provincial and territorial health ministers in Vancouver, B.C., on Wednesday January 20, 2016. (Photo: CP)

The plan will increase physician services for 28 communities across the Sioux Lookout region, and establish up to 10 new or expanded primary care teams that will include traditional healing.

Hoskins says there will also be cultural competency training for front-line health care providers and administrators who work with First Nations communities.

The government will also expand access to fresh fruits and vegetables for about 13,000 indigenous children and expand diabetes prevention and management in northern and remote communities.

"This investment demonstrates that our government is committed to ensuring First Nations communities have equitable access to health care no matter where they live," said Hoskins.


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