About IAPH

The statistics are familiar to many of us. The gap in life expectancy between aboriginal and other Canadians is seven years. Aboriginal people are more likely than other Canadians to have hearing, sight and speech disabilities. Aboriginal people experience significantly higher rates of diabetes and other diseases than the rest of Canadians.

We already know some of the reasons why the health of aboriginal people is worse than the health of other Canadians, but there is much that we still do not know. The -Institute of Aboriginal Peoples' Health (IAPH) was developed to help fill in the gaps in our knowledge. Its role is to lead a national advanced research agenda in the area of aboriginal health and promote innovative research that will serve to improve the health of aboriginal people in Canada.

IAPH is not only focused on illness, but on wellness too. For instance, we want to know how factors such as Aboriginal culture and spirituality can affect health and wellness.

In consultation with our advisory board, IAPH asks the health research questions, and provides funding to support researchers who will look into the important answers. We encourage aboriginal students to take up health research, so that they can bring our own perspective to making our communities well. Where non-aboriginal researchers do the research, we make sure that they work well with communities, consulting with them, informing them, and partnering with them, so that community wishes are respected.

Who we are


IAPH is pursuing ambitious goals to improve the health and well-being of aboriginal people in every part of Canada by stimulating aboriginal health research, creating new knowledge, forming research partnerships with organizations in Canada and abroad and respectfully involving aboriginal communities in every project undertaken.


IAPH will strive to improve the health of First Nations, Inuit and Métis people by supporting innovative research programs based on scientific excellence and aboriginal community collaboration.


IAPH will play a lead role in building research capacity in the First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities, and will support partnerships and alliances between aboriginal communities and non-aboriginal health research organizations/institutes at the local, regional, national and international levels. IAPH supports health research that respects aboriginal cultures, while generating new knowledge to improve the health and wellbeing of aboriginal people.


At all times, IAPH is guided by the highest ethical and moral standards and its core set of values:

  • present health research results to aboriginal people in a way that is accessible, appropriate and easily understood
  • maintain ethical standards by adhering consistently to prescribed values and principles
  • act in an honest, fair and just manner
  • aim to include aboriginal people in all health research activities
  • share new knowledge with all research partners
  • conduct all activities and business in a transparent manner

What we do

As one of the thirteen Institutes of Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), IAPH shares responsibility for achieving the principal objectives of CIHR.

IAPH is dedicated to supporting research and building research capacity in First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples' health. IAPH research funding supports researchers located in universities, hospitals and other research centres across Canada. Research funding is in the form of grants, funding of capacity building programs and training for aboriginal researchers. View IAPH's funding opportunities.

The IAPH Peer Review Committee in Aboriginal Peoples' Health evaluates applications for funding within the research priorities of the IAPH mandate.

A major contribution to improving the health of aboriginal peoples comes from the IAPH Network Environments for Aboriginal Health Research (NEAHR) initiative. This network of research centres allows researchers to continue their studies while working alongside aboriginal people.

IAPH also encourages capacity building by supporting and nurturing graduate students pursuing careers in aboriginal health research.

IAPH encourages partnerships with aboriginal peoples.

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