Patient and community engagement essential to Indigenous health research: speakers – UM Today

December 7, 2022 — When Métis rheumatologist Dr. Cheryl Barnabe started seeing rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients in Calgary about 16 years ago, she almost never saw hands deformed by joint inflammation.

The patients were accessing effective treatment that prevented that unfortunate outcome.

Then one day, a First Nations woman came in whose hands were badly deformed. Barnabe learned that the system would only pay for this patient to be transported from her community to a particular town – not into Calgary – for treatment.

In this town, the woman had been receiving an outmoded injection treatment that had been standard in the 1980s, instead of a modern biologic medication.

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