First Nations Told Not to Panic About Consent Form

Tuesday, January 27, 2004 at 14:22



The FSIN is telling First Nations citizens not to worry about recent news reports concerning the health consent form issue.


CanWest News reported yesterday that hundreds of thousands of First Nations people could lose their benefits by March 1st.


That’s the deadline Health Canada has given for status Indians to hand in a controversial form that will give the government access to their confidential health information.


First Nations leaders have been trying to convince the federal government to scrap the idea.


FSIN vice chief Morley Watson argues the consent forms are a violation of privacy and treaty rights.


Watson says he and other Aboriginal leaders will be talking to Health Minister Pierre Pettigrew later this week.


Watson is confident either a resolution will be reached soon, or at the very least, there will be an extension of the deadline.


Watson says First Nations citizens may be feeling pressure to sign a consent form, but he wants to make it clear to both pharmacists and the First Nations population that there is no requirement for a consent form at this time.


Watson is confident First Nations people will be satisfied with the eventual outcome of this dispute, mainly because of Prime Minister Paul Martin’s apparent willingness to listen to Aboriginal concerns.