Aboriginal Population Data Indicators Pilot
The author undertook the “Aboriginal Population Data Indicators pilot Project” as an internship with the Cancer Informatics Unit (CIU) of Juravinski Cancer Centre (JCC) at Hamilton Health Sciences in Hamilton, Ontario, between June and August of 2009. The Aboriginal Population Data Indicators Pilot Project was rolled out to develop and evaluate a data collection tool to identify Aboriginal status of Cancer patients visiting the two regional cancer center’s selected by Cancer Care Ontario (CCO). Hamilton and Thunder Bay areas were chosen because of the large Aboriginal populations in the respective LHIN’s. The objective of the project is to gather quality cancer specific data on Aboriginal people and to use the data to extract knowledge that would aid in decision making and policy planning which in turn would improve the health status of the Aboriginal community. Currently, no identification data is collected on Aboriginality. The potential benefits of the pilot project are: • Demonstrate to Aboriginal providers, organizations and communities the value of collecting and analyzing data on Aboriginal health. o This information can assist in improving the health status of Aboriginal people and the quality of care they receive in Ontario. Furthermore, it will help the cancer centre to gain a better understanding of the cancer care needs of the Aboriginal populations served in their areas. o This information can also be used to see which groups are being underserviced, for example if their cancers are being caught at later stages. This will give us the kind of information as to which groups may need to be targeted for better services; and • To provide a template for developing other sources of data on Aboriginal health.