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February 8, 2024
The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) is meeting with Indigenous leaders, organizations and communities across the country as part of our path to a public apology, on behalf of the CMA and as the national voice of physicians, for the medical harms caused to First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples.
These conversations are opportunities for the CMA to listen and learn, both to further inform our work on Indigenous health and to advance the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Calls to Action.
Upcoming meetings include the National Métis Health Policy Forum on Feb. 8, where CMA’s vice-chair of the board — Dr. Paula Cashin — is an invited guest. During her visit, Dr. Cashin will also gather with Indigenous leaders in the Ottawa area.
“These national conversations are an important step on our path to an apology and the action that will follow. Two-way sharing and learning, along with an examination of past and present medical harms experienced by Indigenous Peoples, will aim to build the trust and collaboration required for the hard work that follows authentic apologies. We all have roles to play to advance positive change in the health care experiences of Indigenous patients, families, communities and Nations.”
— Dr. Alika Lafontaine, CMA past president
Feedback from the national conversations will help to inform our journey to an apology — to be delivered with an associated ceremony in June — and an action plan to ensure our ongoing commitment to advancing reconciliation.