We are located on Penobscot Nation ancestral land and are privileged to care for and the Wabanaki people including members of the Penobscot and Passamaquoddy tribes as well as occasionally the Maliseet and Micmac in a number of different ways: primarily, our adult medicine teaching service, obstetrical teaching service and pediatric teaching service are the services to which indigenous community members of the Penobscot Nation living on Indian Island will be admitted. One of our frequent community preceptors is the lead physician at the tribal health center on Indian Island, a reservation 10 minutes upriver. We have the privilege of caring for his patients when inpatient. Residents receive sensitivity training to care for our indigenous neighbors who have suffered much trauma through healthcare in the past.
However, the opportunities do not stop there. A retired faculty member, Dr Mehl Madrona, facilitates an educational ceremonial medicine elective whereby he brings residents to either the Sundance Ceremony in South Dakota, or up to Alaska, and residents observe, provide medical support to injured participants, and serve as needed while learning about spiritual rites.
There is another elective opportunity more locally through Dr Mehl Madrona with Wabanaki Public Health and Wellness. This group has grown exponentially in the past decade and is working tirelessly in the realms of food insecurity, mental health, addiction rehabilitation through tradition and community.