President’s Update for July 5, 2013

In this edition...

Our online Specialty Clinic Schedules

SEARHC frequently brings in traveling medical specialists to hold specialty clinics at a variety of facilities. This can save you the expense and inconvenience of flying to Anchorage or Seattle for services not available in Southeast. Some SEARHC medical providers make regular trips to smaller, remote clinics to provide specialty services that aren't normally available in those villages. All specialty clinics, except for medical field trips and specified dental clinics, must be referred through a SEARHC provider (no self-referrals).

If you would like to check the Specialty Clinic Schedules you can find them here on our website. They are listed under both the "Services" menu and the "Patient Information" menu. Our Dental Clinic Field Trips, Medical Field Trips, Juneau Specialty Clinics and Sitka Specialty Clinics are all located on these pages.


Consortium wide Infection Prevention and Control Manager

Please join me in welcoming Michelle Kennedy, R.N., A.N.P., in her new position as our Consortium wide Infection Prevention and Control Manager. Michelle has been a nurse for 38 years and first worked for SEARHC in 1988 as the night shift OB charge nurse. After several years in a variety of positions, and subsequent to furthering her education by becoming a Women's Health Nurse Practitioner, she returned to SEARHC in 2008 as a CHAP Educator. Aside from her Infection Preventionist role, Michelle periodically assists in the Wise Woman program working as a women's healthcare provider in the villages.

She comes to us with a strong background in Public Health and was an itinerant public health nurse for several of the SEARHC village health clinics. In Angoon Michelle was adopted into the Eagle/Wolf clan and her Tlinggit name is Skx'eitwo'os Tlaa.


Going Smokefree is a positive experience for Hoonah bars

Hoonah business owners Ed and Barbara Phillips (Icy Strait Lodge) and Mary and Jim Erickson, (Office Bar) decided to take their businesses smokefree one and a half years ago. SEARHC supported smokefree planning negotiations earlier in 2011, but each business owner was nervous about being the first bar to go smokefree. Although it was iffy, the Office Bar went smokefree on October 1st 2011 and when Ed Phillips heard about it he changed the Icy Strait Lodge policy immediately!

There were several unexpected outcomes for the business owners. Both noticed new customers coming in, and regular non-smoker customers spending more time in the bar. They found everyone, including smokers, liked the absence of third hand smoke on their clothes. Toxic chemicals were no longer needed to clean the bars and it took significantly less time. Icy Strait Lodge owners do not worry about the furs on their walls being destroyed by smoke now and Ed noticed the pool of potential employees has increased. The Office Bar had lower heating bills since doors did not have to be propped open in winter. Going smokefree was also their impetus to redecorate and put in new wood flooring.

SEARHC plans to create radio and print media to highlight the Icy Strait Lodge and the Office Bar going smokefree simultaneously. Hoonah’s experience serves as a great model for other South East Alaskan bars and restaurants that are still not smokefree.

Charles Clement

Just a reminder...


ANTHC Fall Scholarship program and application

I wanted to let you know that ANTHC has opened the Scholarship application process for the fall term. They will be awarding 5 scholarships up to $5,000 each. The deadline is July 15th.

Scholarships are available for Alaska Native or American Indians who are:

  • Permanent Alaska residents
  • Interested in working in the healthcare field
  • Currently enrolled in a formal education or training program

Please spread the word about this wonderful opportunity. The scholarship packet can be accessed through the following link: ANTHC-ScholarshipPacket