The report In Plain Sight: Addressing Indigenous Specific Racism and Discrimination in B.C. Health Care by Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond was released in December 2020 and represents lived experiences from nearly 9,000 Indigenous patients, clients, staff and medical staff, of whom 84 per cent have experienced racism in health care. There are 24 recommendations provided that cover systems, behaviours and beliefs.
Over the next month, we'll be sharing how we've started to move forward with these recommendations. Below are the ways we are going to address racism, better care for Indigenous patients and clients in our hospitals and communities and also support and educate staff and medical staff along the way.
In Plain Sight Recommendation 5: That the B.C. government, First Nations governing bodies and representative organizations and Metis Nation of B.C. jointly develop a strategy to improve the patient complaint processes to address individual and systemic Indigenous racism.
Indigenous Patient Navigators (IPNs) – Deni Wallace, LGH; Jessica Lutwick, VGH; Priscilla Lawson-Pires, VGH; Sonia Keshane, VGH
Indigenous Patient Care Clinicians (IPCCs) - Brandi Dan, LGH; Jessica Key, VGH; Emily MacLeod, VGH
Indigenous Patient Care Quality Liaisons (IPCQ) - Tara Poitras, Emily Hampton
In an effort to better support Indigenous patients, clients and families who are receiving care, and to support health-care teams, we're introducing the Indigenous Patient Experience Team made up of Indigenous patient care clinicians (IPCCs), Indigenous patient navigators (IPNs) and Indigenous patient care quality (IPCQ) liaisons.
The IPCCs and IPNs are clinical team members and their work involves supporting patients, clients and families to access and receive quality, culturally safe care. Together the IPCCs and IPNs also help staff to apply cultural safety into their practice in caring for Indigenous people at VCH.
This team supports Indigenous patients who self-identify at Vancouver General Hospital or Lions Gate Hospital, either during the admission process or at any point during their stay, and a referral will be made to the Indigenous Patient Experience Team. This team helps to strengthen patients understanding of, and confidence in their diagnosis, prescribing treatment and discharge plans, coaching and consultation on Indigenous patient care, and providing traditional cultural support including smudging and traditional medicines.
They will support staff by providing real time Indigenous cultural safety education, and identifying gaps in care that require improvement.
The newest members of the team are the IPCQ liaisons. They will work in collaboration with key stakeholders internal to the organization and the larger VCH PCQO team to facilitate a respectful, comprehensive, and appropriate resolution of patient/family care concerns.
The IPCQ liaisons will also provide leadership and consultation by incorporating an Indigenous perspective and bringing a lens of Indigenous cultural safety, diversity, equity and inclusion to the identification, management, resolution and education of patient/client/resident care issues.