Alberta Health Services recently announced they will be expanding supports for the practice of Indigenous spiritual ceremonies inside AHS facilities.
It is called the Patient Access to Indigenous Spiritual Ceremony Policy.
Jeff Beddome, the advisor for the Indigenous Wellness Core with AHS told us how important this news is to help make Indigenous patients and families feel welcomed.
“As our patients enter the hospital, they’re coming in. Obviously, needing care and support and using our traditional medicines in the past has always played a critical part to our healing. So having access now to their traditional medicines while in a Western setting is also important. So just really being able to provide them that access of traditional healing in a place of Western healing as well.”
This includes smudging and pipe ceremonies that will be brought in.
This announcement stems from the Truth and Reconciliation Calls to Action, calling on Canadian healthcare systems to bring in traditional healing practices for Indigenous peoples.