The Burden of Acute Gastrointestinal Illness and Health Research Knowledge Translation in Inuit Communities

McDonald, M. Ellen
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University of Guelph

This thesis research sought to answer two questions: “What is the burden of acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI) for Inuit in Iqaluit, Nunavut?” and “What does the literature tell us about knowledge translation (KT) in Inuit communities in the Circumpolar North?” Data analysis from two population-level surveys in Iqaluit found the Inuit-specific annual incidence of AGI was higher than both national and international annual incidences, but comparable to population-level (Inuit and non-Inuit) assessments in Iqaluit. Variables associated with increased odds of AGI differed from the Iqaluit population-level assessment, highlighting how factors for AGI can differ for sub-populations. Scoping literature review thematic analysis results indicate community engagement, context, and cohesive messaging are necessary for KT. Community engagement in KT is critical; however, more discussion on challenges and opportunities for improvement is necessary. Similarly, formal evaluation of health research KT on its success or failure to elicit its intended action is necessary.

acute gastrointestinal illness, Aboriginal, Indigenous, Inuit, Iqaluit, Nunavut, infectious disease, burden of illness, Circumpolar, knowledge translation, knowledge transfer, knowledge exchange, results dissemination, results sharing, health, public health messaging, stakeholder, community, scoping review