U of S welcomes its first Indigenous health research chair
- EFN Staff | September 29, 2017
The University of Saskatchewan (U of S) has appointed its first research chair in Indigenous health. As the inaugural Cameco Chair in Indigenous Health, Dr. Alexandra King is set to lead work to improve Indigenous health care in Saskatchewan.
“As our nations are working towards reconciliation and renewed relationships, it becomes apparent that for us to close the gap, to achieve health and wellness for Indigenous people, we need to change the paradigm,” said Dr. King in a media release. “This is well underway in Saskatchewan, and I'm really excited to be contributing leadership from an Indigenous perspective.”
She is a specialist in internal medicine focusing on HIV and hepatitis C, and also teaches Indigenous health and has mentored students at Simon Fraser University focusing on wellness intervention research with Indigenous people. King who is an internal medicine specialist will be based at the College of Medicine for a five-year term in less than three weeks.
“We are thrilled to have a physician, educator and researcher of Alexandra's calibre join our college and our Department of Medicine,” said Dr. Preston Smith, the Dean of the College of Medicine. “Collaborative and mutually beneficial partnerships with Indigenous peoples and communities are central to our mission. This chair is poised to advance our work in this area dramatically.”
King, from the Nipissing First Nation in Ontario, will work with Indigenous communities and all relevant stakeholders to understand the health and wellness needs of Indigenous peoples and the structural changes that may be needed for improved health outcomes. As well, she will lead work to enhance Indigenous health education; advocate for improvements and funding; ensure sustainability of effective services and supports; and facilitate the sharing and use of knowledge and resources to support improved Indigenous health and wellness.
“Cameco supports the work of the chair because we recognize the importance of improving the physical and mental health of northern and Indigenous people in Saskatchewan,” said president and CEO of Cameco Tim Gitzel. “Northerners are valued partners in our business, and providing a safe and healthy workplace is one of our measures of success. We look forward to hearing about Dr. King's accomplishments.”