Indigenous health part 2: the underlying causes of the health gap

Lancet. 2009 Jul 4;374(9683):76-85. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(09)60827-8.


In this Review we delve into the underlying causes of health disparities between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people and provide an Indigenous perspective to understanding these inequalities. We are able to present only a snapshot of the many research publications about Indigenous health. Our aim is to provide clinicians with a framework to better understand such matters. Applying this lens, placed in context for each patient, will promote more culturally appropriate ways to interact with, to assess, and to treat Indigenous peoples. The topics covered include Indigenous notions of health and identity; mental health and addictions; urbanisation and environmental stresses; whole health and healing; and reconciliation.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Attitude to Health / ethnology
  • Causality
  • Community Networks
  • Cultural Competency
  • Environmental Health
  • Global Health*
  • Health Services Needs and Demand
  • Health Services, Indigenous / organization & administration*
  • Health Status Disparities*
  • Healthcare Disparities / organization & administration*
  • Holistic Health
  • Humans
  • Mental Disorders / ethnology
  • Ownership
  • Politics
  • Population Dynamics
  • Population Groups* / ethnology
  • Population Groups* / statistics & numerical data
  • Self Concept
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Substance-Related Disorders / ethnology