Since 2003—before the School welcomed its first students—NOSM sought guidance from Indigenous, Francophone, rural and remote communities. By bringing together members from treaty organizations, Elders, physicians, community leaders, nurses and other health-care professionals from across the North, we learned from their uniquely Northern experiences and expertise. The key elements of the School’s community-engaged learning model are a direct result of their contributions.
So in 2005, when NOSM was established, it was born with an explicit socially accountable mandate; a commitment to respond to the cultural diversity of the region, address the health needs of all Northern Ontarians and improve access to quality care through education and research.
You may have heard it said that if you’ve seen one community, you’ve seen one community.
There is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to health care for all communities in the North. We must understand the differences of each community and recognize that health human resources and needs differ and are specific to each individual community.
NOSM adheres to the World Health Organization’s (WHO) definition of the Social Accountability of Medical Schools as “the obligation to direct their education, research and service activities towards addressing the priority health concerns of the community, region and the nation that they have a mandate to serve.”
"I respect the difference."
Joey McColeman, NOSM Staff Member
Future of Medical Education in Canada
Defining and measuring the social accountability of medical schools
AFMC’s Joint Commitment to Action on Indigenous Health
United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
AFMC’s FrancoDoc is a collection of resources for learning medical French to improve language and cultural skills.