Nishnawbe Aski Nation

skip to content
font size: S M L

April 6, 2018


DEER LAKE FIRST NATION (April 6, 2018): Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler and Deputy Grand Chief Anna Betty Achneepineskum joined with Chief Roy Dale Meekis and community members to celebrate the transfer of the local nursing station to the community of Deer Lake First Nation today.

“We congratulate Chief Meekis and his Council and for their years of work to bring back control of local health services to their community. The transfer of nursing services in Deer Lake to community and Tribal Council control is a great accomplishment, and one of many steps our leaders are taking to build a health system that works for our people. Communities taking control of these types of services is the objective of our approach to the transformation of health care in our communities,” said Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler.

The Keewaytinook Okimakanak (KO) Tribal Council began work in 2015 for the devolution of health services from Health Canada for the KO member communities of Deer Lake, North Spirit Lake, Keewaywin, Fort Severn, Poplar Hill and McDowell Lake.

An agreement was signed with Health Canada on February 20, 2018 for the devolution of the nursing station in Deer Lake. The transfer is believed to be the first in the northwestern Ontario region in more than 20 years.

“Having our communities take control of health services will help rebuild our inherent wellness systems and achieve better outcomes for our people, and we congratulate Keewaytinook Okimakanak for their leadership. We will continue to work towards health services that meet the needs of our communities based on self-determination and our inherent duty to care for ourselves,” said Deputy Grand Chief Anna Betty Achneepineskum.

Community leaders were joined by local and federal health officials and other guests for a ribbon-cutting ceremony followed by a community feast at the school gymnasium.

For more information please contact: Michael Heintzman, Director of Communications – Nishnawbe Aski Nation (807) 625-4965 or cell (807) 621-2790 or by email

News release