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Indigenous Healing Space opens at LHSC

For Immediate Release:
November 4, 2020


LONDON, Ontario – In partnership with Atlohsa Family Healing Services (Atlohsa), London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) is pleased to announce the opening of an Indigenous Healing Space at Victoria Hospital that seeks to improve the experience and quality of care that Indigenous patients and families receive at LHSC. 

“LHSC is committed to improving and enhancing relationships with Indigenous partners, patients and colleagues,” says Dr. Paul Woods, President and CEO, LHSC.  “The new Indigenous Healing Space is the initial element of a collaborative strategy that will focus on providing holistic health, ensuring Indigenous patients receive exceptional quality and care”. 

LHSC’s first step toward building a safe and culturally inclusive environment for Indigenous Peoples was the establishment of a formal partnership with Atlohsa in June 2020. Atlohsa’s holistic continuum of care model set the foundation, informing the continued co-development of LHSC’s Indigenous Healing Strategy, which includes the creation of the new healing space.

The Indigenous Healing Space is a direct response to two of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action under health care, “to address the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual harms caused by residential schools,” by recognizing "the value of Aboriginal healing practices and use them in the treatment of Aboriginal patients in collaboration with Aboriginal healers and Elders, where requested by Aboriginal patients.” 

“Providing holistic, culturally appropriate care to our community is our responsibility at Atlohsa and it is an honour to collaborate with LHSC on this important initiative,” says Raymond Deleary, Executive Director of Atlohsa Family Healing Services. “In this space we will engage Indigenous community partners and create access to traditional healing and ceremony, and so much more. We look forward to helping LHSC staff and physicians build trusting relationships with Indigenous patients by providing cultural and trauma-informed, safe care.”

Dr. Paul Woods, LHSC President and CEO, and Raymond Deleary, Executive Director, Atlohsa are available for media interviews from 9:30 to 11:00 am on Thursday, November 5. 

Photos and video of the Indigenous Healing Space available upon request.

About London Health Sciences Centre
London Health Sciences Centre has been at the forefront of medicine in Canada for 145 years and offers the broadest range of specialized clinical services in Ontario. Building on the traditions of its founding hospitals to provide compassionate care in an academic teaching setting, London Health Sciences Centre is home to Children’s Hospital, University Hospital, Victoria Hospital, the Kidney Care Centre, two family medical centres, and two research institutes – Children’s Health Research Institute and Lawson Health Research Institute. As a leader in medical discovery and health research, London Health Sciences Centre has a history of over 70 international and national firsts and attracts top clinicians and researchers from around the world. As a regional referral centre, London Health Sciences Centre cares for the most medically complex patients including critically injured adults and children in southwestern Ontario and beyond. The hospital’s nearly 15,000 staff, physicians, students and volunteers provide care for more than one million patient visits a year. For more information visit www.lhsc.on.ca.  

About Atlohsa Family Healing Services
Atlohsa Family Healing Services is a non-profit, charitable organization, dedicated to strengthening community through Indigenous-led programs and services that offer holistic healing and wellness. Atlohsa has been serving individuals and families across Southwestern Ontario for over 33 years providing low-barrier wraparound services to community members with complex needs, including mental wellness, substance use, homelessness, domestic violence, and trauma. We specialize in providing strengths-based healing and wellness supports, utilizing trauma-informed and harm reduction approaches. For more information visit www.atlohsa.com.

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For media inquiries contact:                            
Michele Martin 
Corporate Communications and Public Relations 
London Health Sciences Centre
519-685-8500, ext. 77767

Raymond Deleary
Executive Director
Atlohsa Family Healing Services
519-438-0068 ext. 807

After-hours assistance: 
Call LHSC Switchboard at 519-685-8500 and ask to page the communicator on-call