Pressure mounts for governments to address medical crisis on Ontario First Nations

The Canadian Press
OTTAWA – Doctors dispatched to a northern Ontario reserve to treat children with skin conditions say remote communities are dealing with an ongoing medical crisis, the result of a shortage of medical services.

Three physicians from the Weeneebayko Area Health Authority have written an open letter calling for more resources to deal with persistent problems at the Kashechewan First Nation and elsewhere.

The letter, released by northern Ontario MP Charlie Angus, urges Canadians not to tolerate the level of health care access available in the area.

The report echoes conclusions presented last spring by the federal auditor general, who found quality health care in remote First Nations communities is sorely lacking.

The letter comes ahead of an expected meeting with Health Minister Jane Philpott, Ontario Health Minister Eric Hoskins and Nishnawbe Aski Nation leaders.

Their dialogue is expected to focus on the public health emergency declared last month by NAN, a political organization representing northern Ontario First Nations.

A spokesman for Philpott could not provide specific details but confirmed the meeting was scheduled for this week.


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