Arctic Council launches One Health online survey

The Arctic Council's One Health initiative is seeking input from northerners and Arctic researchers through an online survey.

Aimed at helping build networks among Arctic communities

A new online survey is looking to address the health of people who live in the Arctic in a more holistic way. (Jonathan Hayward/Canadian Press)

The Arctic Council's One Health initiative is seeking input from northerners and Arctic researchers through an online survey.

Dr. Thomas Hennessy, co-chair of the Arctic Human Health Experts Group, says the survey is aimed at helping build networks among Arctic communities by accumulating information on health issues.

The Arctic Council wants to learn more about holistic health in the North, looking at how human, animal, plant and environment factors affect health in the Arctic.

"The problems that one community may address may be very similar to what are seen in a very different part of the Arctic, so the more we are connected, the more we are sharing information, the better it is for people because we can learn from each other," he said.

Gwen Healey, executive and scientific director of the Qaujigiartiit Health Research Centre in Iqaluit, said she filled out the survey and is optimistic about where it could lead.

"This will add some meaningful evidence towards maybe shifting our health systems [...] because people want to see their values in the health systems they use."

"Indigenous health models are holistic and other jurisdictions in the Arctic have been shown to be more successful because people can relate to the model of health care that they are accessing and it mirrors their values and languages and it mirrors what is happening in their communities."

The survey wraps up March 20.

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