Ontario improves culturally appropriate child and maternity care with Aboriginal Midwifery programs

Ontario is improving access to culturally appropriate child and maternity care for more Indigenous people across the province.

The Honourable Glenn Thibeault, Member of Provincial Parliament for Sudbury, was at Shkagamik-Kwa Health Centre in Sudbury today, February 16th, 2017, to announce that two new Registered Midwives will be hired to provide culturally appropriate child and maternity care to up to 40 Indigenous women and their children in the community over the next three years. Aboriginal Midwives provide a full range of culturally safe midwifery primary care, support services, language and community education.

In addition, the government is supporting the establishment of the following Aboriginal Midwifery programs across the province:

  • K’Tigaaning Midwives, Powassan
  • Kenhte:ke Midwives, Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory
  • Onkwehon:we Midwives, Akwesasne
  • Dilico Family Health Team, Fort William First Nation
  • Southwest Ontario Aboriginal Health Access Centre, London.

To help people connect more easily with these services, many of the Aboriginal Midwifery programs will work in existing health care teams with family doctors, nurse practitioners, social workers and traditional healers, and will develop strong links with local primary care health services in their area. Ontario is also offering development grants to organizations across the province to explore how Aboriginal Midwifery services could be established in their communities.

Supporting culturally appropriate health care and wellness in Indigenous communities is one of the many steps on Ontario’s journey of healing and reconciliation with Indigenous peoples. It reflects the Ontario government’s commitment to work with Indigenous partners, creating a better future for everyone in the province.

Investing in Indigenous child and maternity care is part of the government’s plan to build a better Ontario through its Patients First: Action Plan for Health Care, which provides patients with faster access to the right care, better home and community care, the information they need to live healthy, and a health care system that is sustainable for generations to come.

About the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care - The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care is working to establish a patient-focused, results-driven, integrated and sustainable publicly funded health system. Its plan for building a sustainable public health care system in Ontario is based on helping people stay healthy, delivering good care when people need it, and protecting the health system for future generations.
Brenda Stockton
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