SA102883 Cover Photo

Advancing Constructs

Exploring Opportunities for Improved Equity in Indigenous Healthcare

This panel discussed challenges Indigenous communities face accessing equitable healthcare and continuity of care. Panelists spoke to their personal experiences as well as the potential of emerging collaborative partnership frameworks to help address these challenges and provide better, more culturally-aligned healthcare solutions.

Be part of the audience, watch the event recording.

Don't have that kind of time? Read the discussion highlights  or meet the speakers .

Have any questions? Please reach out .

Thank you to our speakers!


Our speakers

  • Wes Bova headshot

    Wes Bova 

    Principal, Northern Ontario - Colliers Project Leaders


    Wes is a professional engineer with over 20 years’ experience advocating for indigenous infrastructure and critical capital projects.

    During this time, he developed invaluable experience as a senior manager and board member of the Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation. He is a status member of the Mohawks of Akwesasne.

    In 2023, Wes was nominated to join the National First nations Advisory Committee on Safe Drinking Water. Which works to support First Nations to develop their own safe drinking water by-laws and initiatives.

  • Dr. Miranda Lesperance headshot

    Dr. Miranda Lesperance 

    Vice President, Indigenous Collaboration, Equity, and Inclusion - Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre (TBRHSC)

    Miranda Lesperance is an Anishinaabekwe (Ojibwe woman) from Opwaaganisiniing, Red Rock First Nation – Lake Helen Reserve, in Ontario, Canada.

    She holds a Ph.D. degree in Social and Behavioural Health Sciences from the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. She spent 14 years with the Public Health Agency of Canada prior to completing a Postdoctoral Fellowship with the Bruyère Research Institute and the University of Ottawa conducting health equity research.

    Miranda recently returned home to be closer to land, family, and community, and she is now the Vice President of Indigenous Collaboration, Equity, and Inclusion at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre.

  • Dr. Joseph LeBlanc headshot

    Dr. Joseph LeBlanc 

    Associate Dean Equity & Inclusion - Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM)

    Dr. Joseph LeBlanc is a life-long Northern Ontarian and member of Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory. Passionate about community health and wellbeing, he has extensive experience in asset-based community development and food system change throughout the region.

    Dr. LeBlanc was appointed in 2020 as NOSM University’s inaugural Associate Dean of Equity and Inclusion and previously held the position of NOSM University’s director of Indigenous Affairs. He is also an Assistant Professor of Indigenous Health at NOSM University.

  • Jason Beardy headshot

    Jason Beardy 

    Director of Health Transformation - Matawa Health Cooperative

    Jason Beardy is a member of Muskrat Dam First Nation, a remote community in northwestern Ontario, and served on the Muskrat Dam Band Council for 15 years. During that time, he served as a chair to the IFNA Physician Services for several years and sat in other various committees aimed at addressing health disparities and service needs of the community.

    He relocated to Thunder Bay in 2006, and became the Health Director at Nishnawbe Aski Nation for 6 years.

    He is currently the Director of Health Transformation at the Matawa Health Co-operative in Thunder Bay, an organization that provides health services and advocacy for the 9 Matawa First Nation communities.

Photos courtesy of Chondon Photography .