In line with VCH's commitment to providing accessible, culturally appropriate health care to Indigenous patients and families (see ICS Policy), the Elders in Residence Program embeds Elders and Knowledge Keepers from different Indigenous nations in acute and community health care sites. The Elders and Knowledge Keepers offer culturally specific medicines and healing methods to Indigenous patients and families and provide culturally-specific consultation to involved health care staff and physicians.
Elders' life experience, historical perspective, spiritual knowledge, and cultural connections make them a valuable resource. Currently, Elders are in place at a number of services including Heatley Community Health Clinic, HOpe Centre, George Pearson Centre, Sheway, Downtown CHC and Pender CHC. They are also supporting the Carlisle Centre at Lions Gate hospital and will soon be in place at VGH.