IHSP-Geography Departmental Seminar - Mylène Riva


Charles Meredith House Conference Room, 1130 avenue des Pins Ouest, Montreal, QC, H3A 1A3, CA

The McGill Institute for Health and Social Policy and the McGill Department of Geography are happy to welcome Dr. Mylène Riva , Assistant Professor in the Département de médicine sociale et préventive, Université Laval.

Dr. Riva will present her talk titled: Healthy homes, healthy communities: Understanding the social determinants of health in the Arctic to support population health interventions


There is great diversity in social and environmental conditions across Inuit Nunangat, with some peoples and some communities being healthier than others. Whereas currently available tools such as population health surveys provide useful information on a breath of health indicators, they are more limited in their coverage of the social determinants of Inuit health. This presentation examines the rationale and scope of two research projects aiming to improve knowledge on the social determinants of health in the Arctic to support population (health) interventions. The first project investigates the health impacts of moving to a new house. Across the Canadian Arctic, a large proportion of Inuit households live in overcrowded conditions. This situation is compromising people’s health and communities’ capacity for social and economic development. In 2014-2015, about 150 social housing units were constructed in six (out of 14) communities in Nunavik and 200 in 12 (out of 25) communities in Nunavut. The aim of this pre-post study is to assess the impacts of moving to a new house on mental health, stress, general and physical health among Inuit adults, and the mediating role of psychosocial factors (PSF). The second project aims to define and measure indicators of community well-being, as an integral component in the follow-up of the Nunavik Inuit Health Survey. These projects, developed with Inuit organizations, will generate useful evidence for monitoring the determinants of Inuit health and their change over time, and for evaluating and formulating population interventions, including healthy social policies, development projects, and ecological health promotion programs.