Indigenous Populations

The NSM LHIN continues to work in partnership to advance Indigenous health initiatives that help to increase access and improve coordination of health programs and services for Indigenous people in Simcoe County.

Over the past 10 years, the NSM LHIN has engaged with Indigenous leadership, communities and health services providers. The outcomes of these engagements are reflected in the LHIN’s Healthy People. Excellent Care. One System and its responsibilities under the Local Health System Integration Act, 2006

The NSM LHIN relies on the expertise of its Aboriginal Health Circle (AHC) to guide its work to better meet the health care needs of Indigenous, Métis peoples of Simcoe County. AHC is comprised of 18 member seats and a three-person Aboriginal Health Secretariat. It advises the LHIN on health service priorities, opportunities for engagement, and better coordination of services within Indigenous urban and rural communities.

 Some positive changes have occurred in several communities including:

  • In 2017-2018, the NSM LHIN participated in an environmental scan on Beausoleil Island which identified a gap in access to patient consultation support. The LHIN partnered with Beausoleil to submit a proposal to the Ontario Telemedicine Network (OTN) to improve patient access through telemedicine. The proposal was accepted by OTN and work is currently underway to develop the required clinical programming.
  • One-time funding for an Indigenous Patient Navigator at Chippewas of Rama to communicate and function as a liaison between the patient, their family, the health care team, and community resources; identify patient needs and advocate on their behalf; improve cultural safety and patient access to the health care system; assist with patient discharge and follow-up care planning; provide referrals to outside agencies for health care support and services at home; coordinate traditional and non-traditional community resources and healing; and provide support before, during and after appointments. The project continues into the 2018-2019 fiscal year.

NSM LHIN Indigenous Communities

Beausoleil medicine wheel   Beausoleil First Nation
Moose Deer Point circle with images in middle   
 Moose Deer Point First Nation

 Chippewas of Rama sun with deer in middle  Chippewas of Rama First Nation  Wahta Mohawks logo tree with animals around it  Wahta Mohawks First Nation

LHIN-Funded Indigenous Health Service Providers

Barrie Area Native Advisory Circle logo   Barrie Area Native Advisory Circle
 Enaahtig healing lodge and learning centre logo  Enaahtig Healing Lodge and Learning Centre

Indigenous Population Profile of NSM LHIN

The NSM LHIN is a culturally and linguistically vibrant and distinct region. According to the 2016 census, there are 22,640 Aboriginals in the North Simcoe Muskoka LHIN, comprising 5 per cent of the total population; the third largest number of Aboriginals, by region, in the province.

Based on population, the largest proportion of Indigenous people in North Simcoe Muskoka live in the North Simcoe sub-region (Midland, Penetanguishene, Tiny and Tay), with Barrie and Couchiching also showing significant numbers.

NSM LHIN Sub-Region

Total Population 

Total Aboriginal Population

% of Population Aboriginal

Barrie and Area 




Couchiching (Orillia & Area)




Muskoka and Area




North Simcoe (Midland/Penetanguishene & Area)




South Georgian Bay




Based on 2016 census data.

Provincial LHIN Aboriginal Leads

Each LHIN has a dedicated staff Lead to facilitate Indigenous engagement and planning, together forming a community of practice called the Provincial Aboriginal LHIN Network (PALN).

The scope of the PALN is to facilitate cross-LHIN collaboration, communication and knowledge sharing through bi-monthly Network meetings and one annual event.


For more information on Indigenous planning and services, please contact Tina Christman, Indigenous Health Lead at or 705-326-7750 ext. 3240.