Saturday, 8 December 2012, 08:01 PM
@YourSide Colleague® is a knowledge-sharing platform provided by the First Nations, Inuit and Metis (FNIM) program at Saint Elizabeth to health care providers working in FNIM communities across Canada. The program provides access to 11 internet based professional development courses at no cost to providers working for or with FNIM communities. Many of the courses have been specifically developed with and for health care providers from these communities, combining evidence based information with culturally appropriate resources and content. It has also been designed to help health care providers overcome the feelings of isolation that come with working in rural and remote communities through the use of on line communities of learning and web-based knowledge exchange. The program is currently used by more than 1300 health care workers in over 350 communities and organizations across Canada, and that number continues to grow.
@YourSide Colleague provides online courses and webinars on the most pressing topics for First Nations health care workers. Some of these courses include First Nations Cancer Care, First Nations Diabetes Circle of Care, First Nations Elder Care and First Nations Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Care.
New courses are on the horizon including First Nations Cardiac Care Course and the program hopes to one day offer courses in areas such as maternal and child health, recreation and leadership, and mental health. As well, the Saint Elizabeth First Nations, Inuit and Metis Program is launching a new initiative: The Sharing Knowledge, Strengthening Connections: First Nations, Inuit and Métis Youth and Elders Sexual Health Initiative. The goal of this initiative is to reconnect Elders and youth who are of First Nations, Inuit and Métis ancestry using social media—to address the loss of traditional sexual health teachings.
Community Health Care Workers discuss the value of @YourSide Colleague
Since many rural and remote communities face broadband connectivity challenges, these courses have been consciously designed to provide options that require very little bandwidth. For example, if there is an audio clip, there is a transcript included. If a videoconference discussion is part of the lesson, participants with a low broadband connection may choose to call in by telephone to take part. Saint Elizabeth First Nations, Inuit and Metis Program also has partnered with KO-KNET to provide health care workers different options to access the videoconferencing bridge.
Saint Elizabeth is a charitable not for profit health care organization dedicated to the health of people and communities. For over 12 years the Saint Elizabeth FNIM program has partnered with First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities to support health care in remote and distant locations. Saint Elizabeth provides access to @YourSide Colleague and related e-learning events (webinars and videoconferences) at no cost to health care providers working with and for FNIM communities.
The program is funded through a mix of government (provincial and federal) and non- government funding and charitable donations from the Saint Elizabeth Foundation.