Health care is one of the priorities of the Métis Nation as it heads into the first of the Métis Nation-Crown Summits anticipated under the Permanent Bilateral Mechanism announced by the Prime Minister in December 2016. The Métis Nation has been working with Minister Philpott’s officials in the past few months on a plan to renew the relationship of the Métis Nation with Health Canada and develop a plan for cooperation on critical Métis health issues in time for the Summit with the Prime Minister.
The Minister responded positively to a strategic health sector plan advanced by the MNC and expressed the wish to pursue a whole-of-department approach to work on Métis Nation health issues. This would involve the department itself as well as agencies under its authority such as Public Health Agency of Canada collaborating with the Métis Nation to get a handle on problems such as chronic diseases through research, surveillance and treatment.
The Minister and Métis Nation leaders also discussed the potential for action under the national health accord talks between the federal and provincial governments in which the Métis Nation, First Nations and Inuit have been engaged. Those accords provide for new federal investments in mental health, home care, pharmacare and innovation. Minister Philpott said she would be interested in seeing Métis Nation models for home care. She was also open to a suggestion by President Chartier to engage the five westernmost provinces in discussions on health issues with the Métis Nation.