Why are Indigenous communities seeing so few cases of COVID-19? – CMAJ

August 24, 2020

Like most people, Tania Cameron was watching the news intently as the first cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) were reported in Canada. A member of Niisaachewan First Nation and regional coordinator for Indigenous Sport and Wellness Ontario, she worried that no one was talking to Indigenous communities about the pandemic heading their way.

“When I called a couple of [personal protective equipment] supply companies, they told me, ‘We’re not allowed to announce it, but we’re sold out and if we do get any, priority goes to the hospital.’ So that to me was a warning,” Cameron says. She texted friends in the community, chiefs and council members to raise the alarm and offer help updating pandemic plans.

It wasn’t the first time Cameron has had to prepare for a public health crisis — she and a handful of local health directors developed her community’s first pandemic plan in response to the 2002 outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome.

Read More: https://www.cmaj.ca/content/192/34/E993

NationTalk Partners & Sponsors Learn More