Athabasca Tribal Council, Alberta Health Services move forward on Indigenous Health Clinic
Athabasca Tribal Council (ATC) and Alberta Health Services have signed an agreement to establish an Indigenous Health Clinic at the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre (NLRHC).
The clinic will take about five years to build and will include extensive community engagement to determine what services Indigenous people in the region need most, ATC says this clinic will improve health care in northern Alberta.
What the clinic will offer will also be determined through community engagement, but services could include cultural awareness and sensitivity, helping people navigate the healthcare system, and assisting with referrals to addiction and mental health supports.
“This is, at its heart, a conversation with Indigenous communities on the problems they have experienced accessing quality health care. Working together with AHS we will ensure that First Nations people receive the services they need while recognizing our traditional culture,” says Chief Allan Adam, President of Athabasca Tribal Council.
Murray Crawford, AHS Senior Operating Officer for Fort McMurray said in a press release on Wednesday that the Indigenous Health Clinic will provide accessible, culturally safe health services for First Nations, Métis and Inuit people in the Fort Murray region.
The Indigenous Health Clinic will likely be located on the fourth floor, which use to house long-term care residents, but has since been vacant following the opening of Willow Square Continuing Care Centre in June 2021.
More information about engagement opportunities will be shared with the community once the planning phase has been finalized.