Bluewater Health Offering Traditional Healing Services to Patients

Thursday, June 30, 2022 - 2:03pm

SARNIA & PETROLIA – June 30, 2022 – Patients at Bluewater Health can now access traditional healing services as part of their healthcare journey at Bluewater Health. The Bluewater Health Indigenous Navigation Services team has been working with local Indigenous Knowledge Keepers to begin offering traditional healing services to patients.  

Traditional healing refers to the health practices, approaches, knowledge and beliefs that incorporate First Nations healing and wellness. These practices may include using ceremonies, traditional herbal medicines, energetic therapies and physical or hands-on techniques. All traditional healing is wholistic – treating the body, mind, emotion and spirit.

“It’s having access to cultural forms of healing practices.” says Joanne Jackson, who has been supporting people in their healing journey for over 25 years. “Indigenous practices support treating the whole person, not just the physical ailment.”

Joanne sees patients who wish to access Indigenous services in Bluewater Health’s Spiritual Centre.

“Our ways of practicing equate to mainstream healthcare – and what we are doing at Bluewater Health is finding a way to bridge both practices. It’s providing the opportunity and the right to access Indigenous healing service, without discrimination.”

Knowledge Keepers/Practitioners can include Elders, Healers, Knowledge Keepers and Spiritual Counsellors.  Some may guide through sharing wisdom and traditional teachings, spiritual counseling and healing practices.  Healing can include working with energy, healing with their hands, ceremonies or provide traditional herbal medicines.  

“Bluewater Health is committed to improving Indigenous health outcomes and experiences, and strengthening relations with the Indigenous community,” says Paula Reaume-Zimmer, VP of Integrated Services, and Executive Lead of Bluewater Health’s Equity, Diversity, Inclusivity, and Indigeneity Coalition. “I am grateful to local Elders, Healers, and Knowledge Keepers working with us. Only through our partnership and our learnings can we create better Indigenous health outcomes.”

In 2021, Bluewater Health unveiled its Truth & Reconciliation Commitment. Earlier this month, permanent plaques were installed across the hospital to display and honour the hospital’s commitment to Truth & Reconciliation – and remind Indigenous patients and partners of our commitment to Indigenous health and culture.

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