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Kama.AI Completes Feasibility Study for First Nation Virtual Health Assistants

Kama.AI, an Indigenous owned Artificial Intelligence company, announces the completion of a Feasibility Study for the deployment of an Emotion-AI-powered Virtual Health Assistant for First Nations and other remote or underserved communities.

Indigenous and remote Ontario community members often face challenges accessing health services and health information. The feasibility study was funded through the province’s Ontario Innovation Showcase, managed by the Ontario Centre of Innovation (OCI), and the service was tested by Chapleau Cree and Moose Cree First Nation community members. Five-term Chapleau Cree First Nation Chief, Keith Corston, was pleased with the outcome of the study:

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“It is important that our people have access to critical information when and where they need it. We were happy to work with Kama.AI and the Ontario Centre of Innovation to trial this important service for First Nations,” said Chief Corston.

Padraic Taaffe, Health Coordinator for Chapleau Cree, and the lead sponsor of the trial and feasibility study, had this to say, “Kama.AI’s Virtual Health Assistant is the perfect example of the kind of digital health tool that we need: lightweight and agile but with the depth needed to help navigate the volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous healthcare landscape facing First Nation peoples. It was easy and intuitive for the community to use but able to deliver clear and pertinent information aggregated from multiple sources.”

“Through the Ontario Innovation Showcase and the Ontario Together Fund, our government is supporting homegrown technologies and innovations that will strengthen the resilience of Ontario’s health care system,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. “Ontario is proud to partner with Kama.AI to help First Nations and other remote or underserved communities access care through innovative digital technologies to improve health and wellbeing.”

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Brian Ritchie, Kama.AI’s CEO, said that, “While a Virtual Health Assistant cannot replace in-person healthcare supports, it can help community members understand what is available, and how to navigate and interact with the services that are provided.” Ritchie, who is also a member of Chapleau Cree First Nation, was delighted to be able to test Kama.AI’s Designed Emotional Intelligence with two Cree Indigenous Communities.

“We have a strong focus on assisting enterprises with product and service marketing and support, but we have always felt that our Virtual Assistants have a role to play in improving the health and wellbeing of First Nation peoples. Equally, we are encouraged by the positive feedback received regarding the impact Virtual Agents can have on preserving and regaining Indigenous culture,” said Ritchie.

Funding for the Ontario Innovation Showcase and the feasibility study was provided by the Ontario Together Fund. Dr. Claudia Krywiak, OCI’s President and Chief Executive Officer, said, “We have had the honour of supporting some of Ontario’s leading tech companies, helping them start-up, scale-up, and succeed, and we look forward to continuing to support tech companies that are addressing issues affecting Indigenous and First Nations peoples.”

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