Lost in Translation

“In a lot of Indigenous languages, there’s no word for cancer,” says Aboriginal patient navigator Leonard Benoit—a nurse-cum-advocate for First Nations patients with the Toronto Central Regional Cancer Program. In this role, he helps translate and clarify diagnosis and treatment information for patients, links them to support programs and intervenes if their rights to spiritual practices like smudging are denied.

Many Indigenous peoples live in remote areas and face transportation and language barriers (among others) preventing timely diagnosis and care. Navigators like Benoit support this vulnerable population which, per a recent report, faces higher cancer incidence and mortality rates than other Ontarians.

The Globe and Mail

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