A Preliminary Study to Assess and Develop a Métis Community Readiness Model and Indicators of Success

Métis in BC and Canada have significantly lower health status than the general population. Arthritis, high blood pressure, diabetes and stomach problems are common chronic conditions among the Métis population. Currently, the BC health care system addresses Métis health issues within the mainstream system of care — a system that lacks the resources and guidelines to address culturally and regionally specific health issues. Consequently, there have been calls for Métis-specific health services. The provincial organization, Métis Nation BC (MNBC), has recently begun working with Métis communities to plan and deliver Métis-specific health programs and services. The Community Readiness Model (CRM) is a method for assessing and planning culturally valid strategies in communities that takes community resources, attitudes, and experiences into consideration. Dr. Peter Hutchinson is collaborating with MNBC and Okanagan Métis Child and Family Services to assess the CRM and identify indicators of success for social services. Dr. Hutchinson will present the model to community members and Métis social service providers to gather suggestions for adapting it for Métis communities. In addition, Dr. Hutchinson will work with his Métis partners to identify indicators for gauging the success of Métis-specific health services, determining the Okanagan Métis community’s priorities for specific health issues, and developing a proposal to pilot test the CRM. Ultimately, this research will improve health in Métis communities by enhancing health delivery and increasing access to services.