Canadian Healthcare Association

Canadian Healthcare Association
Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada

Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada

February 04, 2010 17:31 ET

Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada and Canadian Healthcare Association Build the Foundation for Cultural Safety in Health System

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 4, 2010) - Many barriers in the health system prohibit health professionals from providing the most appropriate quality care to Canadians. One barrier of particular concern to First Nation, Inuit and Metis peoples, as well as to those of minority backgrounds, is the systemic lack of cultural safety measures in the Canadian system.

In order to have care that is culturally safe, health professionals need to systemically assess the ways in which their health policies, research, education, and practices may recreate previous traumas inflicted upon Aboriginal peoples and members of minority groups in Canada and to eliminate lingering racism against individuals, their families or their cultures.

Education and training are key components in changing the system. To this end, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed on February 4, 2010, between the Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada (A.N.A.C.) and the Canadian Healthcare Association (CHA). The MOU will form the basis for the development of courses, tools and resources that will serve to integrate cultural safety into health care workplace settings.

The first deliverable from this MOU will be the development and implementation of a new distance learning course for health care managers and professionals in the workplace. This new course builds on A.N.A.C.'s "Cultural Competence and Cultural Safety in Nursing Education: A Framework for First Nations, Inuit and Metis Nursing". It was released on National Reconciliation Day on June 11, 2009, as the result of a partnership project by the Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada, the Canadian Nurses Association, and the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing.

Rosella Kinoshameg, president of A.N.A.C. states, "The Canadian Healthcare Association and the Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada are working together to promote culturally safe workplaces for health professionals and their patients. This course, delivered by distance education to nurses in their practice settings across Canada, will improve the health of Aboriginal Canadians and those with minority backgrounds."

"The Canadian Healthcare Association is pleased to work in partnership with the Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada in developing this critically-needed distance-learning course," said Pamela C. Fralick, president and CEO, Canadian Healthcare Association. "The MOU signed today is the first step in the development of education tools that will link health system managers and professionals to the competencies needed to ensure culturally safe care in all practice settings."

A.N.A.C. and CHA believe that successful implementation of the cultural competency distance learning course not only improve cultural competence and cultural safety in health workplaces, but will also create the foundation for future work that will include ongoing education and consultation to support national implementation of the cultural safety competencies in the health system.

Background

The project, called 'Making it Happen: Curriculum Development for Health Care Professionals' is made possible by funding from Health Canada's Aboriginal Health Human Resources Initiative (AHHRI). It is based on A.N.A.C.'s "Cultural Competence and Cultural Safety in Nursing Education: A Framework for First Nations, Inuit and Metis Nursing" that was released on National Reconciliation Day in June 2009 through a joint partnership of A.N.A.C., the Canadian Nurses Association and the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing.

Please consult http://www.anac.on.ca/competency.php and www.cha.ca for more information.

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