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Ispeyimuunikamikw Home Dialysis Centre Opens in Waskaganish


The CBHSSJB inaugurated the new Home Dialysis Training Centre and Respiratory Clinic in Waskaganish on May 16, 2023.


The new centre named “ispeyimuunikamikw - The Hope Centre” will offer personalized training and client support in home dialysis techniques: peritoneal dialysis and hemodialysis.  

The CBHSSJB is one of the first organizations in Quebec to offer this type of training. This is an ambitious project that enables clients to take more control of their healing journey. 

Video: Inauguration of Ispeyimuunikamikw Home Dialysis Centre

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In 2019, the CBHSSJB initiated this project to promote home dialysis on the Cree territory. Today, clients are using this technique in Chisasibi and Waswanipi; however, their training required them to spend several weeks in Montreal.  

The training centre in Waskaganish is entirely operated by specialized nurses, in close collaboration with McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) nephrologists.

With soaring rates of kidney disease on the territory, this initiative will increase client autonomy while reducing the need to spend time outside Eeyou Istchee. 

Bertie Wapachee, Chair of CBHSSJB

Greater autonomy for dialysis clients

"The CBHSSJB is continually looking for innovative ways to provide access to care on the territory and this project is one among many that will ensure that we are the most progressive First Nations health care organization in Canada and in the world. We are grateful for the Council of the Cree Nation of Waskaganish for believing in our project and for reaching an agreement to make the old police station available to us. This gesture is fully in line with the 2023 Year of Social Solidarity in Eeyou Istchee."

- Bertie Wapache, Chairperson, CBHSSJB

Home hemodialysis clients will spend about six weeks getting set up with the system, while clients choosing peritoneal dialysis will spend up to four weeks at the centre. Once the training is complete, a nurse will accompany clients at home to ensure they feel confident and comfortable dialyzing on their own. The team will be available to answer clients' questions and to intervene in case of difficulties.  

In addition to offering a home treatment service for hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis to clients in Waskaganish, the CBHSSJB will continue to welcome clients at its treatment units in Chisasibi and Mistissini. 

Daniel St-Amour

Prevention remains a priority

“The well-being of our clients is our everyday priority. Knowing that the main causes leading our clients to receive dialysis renal replacement therapy is diabetes and high blood pressure, the next step for us, as a responsible organization, will be to work harder on prevention to reduce the chances of our clients from ending up in renal failure situations."

- Daniel St-Amour, Executive Director, CBHSSJB

The CBHSSJB is working closely with the nephrology team at the MUHC to coordinate the transition to home care. Several meetings will be held in Montreal with the nephrologist and the training nurses before the client begins to learn this new technique.  

Video: Clients share their experience

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Nancy Shecapio-Blacksmith

Healing close to home

“Spending a long time away from home (average 1-2 years before receiving a transplant) is an ordeal that no one wants to go through. The greatest reward for our dialysis clients in Waskaganish is to be able to look forward to having more control over their treatment, while benefitting from the healing that comes from staying close to home and family.”  

- Nancy Shecapio-Blacksmith, Director, DSPQA-Health, CBHSSJB 

The Respiratory Clinic recently moved to the training centre, which has provided space to provide better services to clients. New equipment adapted to the client will complement existing material, including a body box to help respiratory therapists assess lung functioning. 


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