James Bay Communities Connected To Telehealth Services

July 15, 2009

McGuinty Government Improving Health Care for Northern Ontarians


The McGuinty government is helping three of Ontario’s northernmost communities access state-of-the-art health care through videoconferences and the transmission of digital files.Attawapiskat, Fort Albany and Kashechewan First Nations will benefit from new telemedicine and teleradiology services. This is the final implementation of the James Bay Telemedicine Project linking these communities to provincial and federal telehealth telecommunications infrastructure.

The Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) is providing $136,000 for new equipment at the Kashechewan Nursing Station at Weeneebayko Health Ahtuskaywin, and at James Bay General Hospital sites in Attawapiskat and Fort Albany. Three new jobs are expected from this project.


“This is another important step toward increasing the level of health care for residents of Ontario’s Far North. Modern telehealth services, including access to telemedicine and teleradiology innovations, will positively impact the overall health and well-being of all First Nations communities along the James Bay coastline.”
– Minister Michael Gravelle, Minister of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry
and Chair of the NOHFC


> Telemedicine is secure videoconferencing of medical information from one site to another via electronic communications, and includes consultative, diagnostic and treatment services. Teleradiology is the process of digitally transmitting x-rays from one site to another, allowing the radiologist to interpret films from a remote location.
> With a combined population of 5,000, Attawapiskat, Fort Albany and Kashechewan are located along the western James Bay coast.
> recently announced additional funding of $500,000 bringing NOHFC’s total to $1,500,000 to install about 500 kilometres of fibre optic cable that connects Northern communities to high-speed Internet.


> NOHFC programs: www.mndm.gov.on.ca/nohfc

Anne-Marie Flanagan, Minister’s Office, 416-327-0655
Michel Lavoie, Communications Branch, 705-564-7125


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