Northern and Aboriginal Health

The health of indigenous peoples all over the world suffers disproportionately. They continue to show disparities in most social and health indicators when compared with mainstream populations. SPHERU’s work on northern and Aboriginal health is grounded in this global context.

We know culture is an important determinant when looking at the health of Aboriginal people in Canada, and our projects explore the role of culture and how it affects health. This means developing culturally relevant definitions of health, as well as appropriate health indicators.

These areas of research are new and still unfolding, and we recognize there are still limits on our understanding of culture and health. We also need to better understand how culture intersects with more defined determinants – income, social status, education and employment. Our plan is to produce quality Aboriginal health data that will measure health disparities and ultimately help reduce these.

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