Queen's University has an optional, flexible, third year of training for family physicians interested in working with Aboriginal populations. A draft of the program description was presented to the board members of the National Native Physicians Association in 1992 and was received with support and interest. It was hoped that this program will also impact on the curricula of the core family medicine residency and undergraduate medical years. A further positive by-product enunciated in 1992 was the the establishment of a more active policy of attracting Aboriginal medical students to Queen's University.
This has happened, and since 1999 Queen's University has had an Aboriginal medical student admissions policy in place which has been successful in increasing the numbers of offers of admission to aboriginal students The establishment of postgraduate medical education in Aboriginal Health is a significant step, but certainly not sufficient in itself. Berger reminds us that we must be a part of the healing process for Aboriginal peoples:
"A history of disease and death permeates relations between Whites and Natives today. Down the long passageways of time the memories of fire and epidemic occurring and recurring, manifesting themselves today in marginalization and despair, form a chain, linking the past to the present. If we are ever to break that chain, or to forge durable links in a new, stronger and healthier one, we must be willing to come to grips with the past that we share with the Native people, a past of which we are hardly aware but which they know too well. The cure for the pathology afflicting Native communities lies in acknowledging this - such would be "the treatment of the whole community."