Lessons from the land

I come from a background that's both urban and prairie, in pretty equal measures.

These different settings gave me a land-based perspective, and one that's more in-line with the more conventional 'Western' education system. They don't need to be mutually exclusive.

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Canadian inequality grows with healthcare spending

Inequality in health is a reality in Canada, even though our health care system is widely accessible. But there's much we can do — policies and initiatives that could lead us toward a future with healthier lives, and healthier communities.

The Canadian Institute for Health Information has just released this report, laying out a lot of great solutions, or at the very least, places to start. View the summary report here, and their interactive e-tool here.

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Dreaming Healthy Nations: Indigenous knowledge can save Canadian education

Indigenous education is radically shifting across the country, and quickly.

Instead of crumbs, Indigenous peoples are determined to deliver to their children what the treaties promised — an education that honours their future. To deliver an education parallel with  the rest of Canada.

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Action-driven education can make stronger, healthier citizens

"What's your philosophy of education?"

I was asked this question repeatedly as an education student, before I had any idea how daunting it would be to actually lead a classroom. Each time I thought, "But when will I learn how to teach?"

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There's a health gap in Canadian education

“Health promotion supports personal and social development through providing information, education for health, and enhancing life skills… Action is required through educational, professional, commercial and voluntary bodies, and within the institutions themselves

The Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion, 1986

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Patients' voices matter in Canadian health care

How do we measure a health care system? Should we examine re-admissions, wait-times, or medical errors?

The numbers are necessary for assessment and quality improvement purposes, but no amount of data, no algorithm however complex, can capture the patient experience.

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Living wages help employers too

$16.77 per hour is how much workers in Saskatoon need to earn just to afford the basics of life. But why would a business pay more than the legislated minimum wage?

The Better Good's owner Laura Neufeld recently told Upstream of her experience  as a Living Wage employer, and why there are concretely positive reasons for businesses to pay workers what they need to live.

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The way forward

On Monday, October 19th, Canadians went to the polls for the 42nd time, electing a new federal government.

Upstream is best described as 'non-partisan, but hyper-political'. Our primary concern is to see health take the primary place in public discourse it deserves. This means paying close attention to the platforms and message from parties during and between elections.

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Elect for the health, happiness and prosperity of Canadians

There’s been a lot of talk about cultural differences and national security during the election, but little attention paid to the kinds of policies that could directly impact the health and happiness of Canadians. Here, we propose three public policy changes that, if taken seriously at the federal level, could not only make us happier and healthier, but actually save taxpayer dollars in the long run.

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This election can end Canada's dark age

When you think about scientific research, its association to politics may not be the first thing to cross your mind. But it’s important for us to seriously consider the need for good quality, available evidence as we head to the polls on October 19th. 

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