June 27, 2022
After a pause in screening due to COVID restrictions, the Can-SOLVE CKD Network Kidney Check screening program in BC has now resumed.
Kidney Check is bringing kidney, diabetes and blood pressure checks to rural and remote Indigenous communities across Canada. Mobile health-care teams will be screening for diabetes, high blood pressure and kidney health, so that they can find and help address health problems as soon as possible.
Catherine Turner, BC Kidney Check Coordinator, shares in the communities enthusiasm at the return of the engagement and screenings. BC Kidney Check nurse training and screening took place in Williams Lake in April 2022 and screened an estimated 90 Haida Nation members in May 2022.
“The Three Corners Health Services Society health care team has the capacity to carry out screening on their own” says Turner, and their plan going forward is to offer screening one week out of every month to their members on an ongoing basis.
Being screened early for kidney disease is crucial and the support for Kidney Check screening was highlighted in the Williams Lake Tribune (“Kidney health focus of Three Corners Health Society project“).
Upcoming engagement sessions are planned this fall in Bella Bella with Heiltsuk Nation and in Port Alberni with Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council.
Ha-Shilth-Sa, a Nuu-chah-nulth publication, highlighted Kidney Check engagement in a recent article (“Kidney screening resumes after pandemic delay.”) A Kidney Check promotional booth was set up in collaboration with Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council during the National Indigenous Peoples Day gathering in Port Alberni on June 21 (pictured below). The day was a success and more than 20 community members signed up to be contacted for screening when available dates occur in their community.
As we look towards the future of Kidney Check, Turner is happy to share she is enrolled in a pilot Indigenous Coach Certification Training Program offered in partnership with the First Nations Health Directors Association and the First Nations Health Authority. Turner states it will give her the ability to support Kidney Check training not just in BC, but across the national Kidney Check training program.
Kidney Check is a national screening program, led by Dr. Aminu Bello in Alberta, with provincial teams in British Columbia, Alberta, and Manitoba.
With BC Kidney Check resuming, the Indigenous communities which it supports are looking forward to its return. As one Skidegate member stated on social media “I tried to get in last year. Couldn’t. I’m glad it’s back.”
BC Kidney Check nurse Grace Oloresisimo (R) with Matilda Atleo, Health Promotion Worker, Nursing Department, NTC
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