Canada Health Infoway's board of directors has decided to provide 100 percent funding to First Nations' (Native Canadians) telehealth projects linked to existing projects within provinces and territories, including underserved rural communities.
Stand-alone First Nations telehealth projects will receive 75 percent funding.
First Nations is a Canadian term of ethnicity, referring to the indigenous people located in what is now Canada.
According to the First Nations Regional Longitudinal Health Survey (RHS), nearly one in five First Nations adults have no doctor or nurse available in their community. Telehealth can improve access by overcoming barriers of geography, transportation infrastructure, and socio-economic disparity, according to Infoway.
Currently, about 100 First Nations across Canada use telehealth technologies for clinical consultation, continuing professional education, health promotion, healthcare management and administration.
Infoway is a federally funded, not-for-profit organization that promotes the acceleration of EHRs across Canada.