COVID-19 and Indigenous Health and Wellness: Our Strength is in our Stories


This report, produced by the Royal Society of Canada, is written as a collection of stories. This collection of stories is meant to offer support an improved understanding of how COVID-19 is impacting the health and wellness of Indigenous Peoples. The authors emphasize the relational and holistic nature of Indigenous health and wellness. Indigenous health and wellness reflects an interrelationship between humans and the natural world and this inter-relatedness extends to mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual domains.

The report highlights how Indigenous Peoples relational understanding of health, combined with a shared experience of colonialism means that the Indigenous experiences of COVID-19 are unique within the broader Canadian experience and impact on health.

The authors share their stories as a means of humanizing COVID-19 to the broader research and policy community. The author’s call attention to the dearth of Indigenous-specific COVID-19 data, but also as an expression of self-determination to share their knowledge in a way that is meaningful as Indigenous scholars, practitioners, and learners.

The report further states that health, social, and political crises that predate the COVID-19 Pandemic continue to impact communities across Canada. These crises include inadequate access to social determinants of health such as safe and affordable housing, food security, and safe drinking water, among others.

Access the full report or executive summary