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Patient Referrals, Travel and Housing

Like many healthcare systems, SEARHC relies on a system of referrals for specialized and emergency medical treatment. The SEARHC Referral and Travel Team can help facilitate the process.

Patient Travel Office

SEARHC is here to make sure all of your emergency travel and medical needs are met. We have a travel coordinator on-call 24/7 for all of our patients who need emergency travel assistance and meet the eligibility requirements.

SEARHC Patient Referrals and Travel

Toll-free: 1.833.966.TRIP (8747)
We ask that patients please call as soon as they know of the need to change their travel arrangements.

Courtesy Shuttles in Sitka and Juneau

SEARHC provides courtesy shuttle services to our Sitka and Juneau Campuses.

Sitka  |  907.966.8399 |  8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Please schedule your ride at least 24 hours before your SEARHC appointment.

Juneau  |  907.364.4410 | 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
The shuttle operates from Sandy Beach in Douglas to the 5000 block of North Douglas and Front Street downtown to Mendenhall Back Loop Road in the valley.

SEARHC Patient Housing Facility

Many SEARHC patients from outside of Sitka visit Mt. Edgecumbe Medical Center to receive advanced health care services that require little to no hospitalization. Our 7,820-square-foot short-term housing facility offers a safe, comfortable place to stay for as many as thirty-two patients or family members. Our facility offers eighteen rooms, including fourteen double-occupancy rooms and four single rooms. In addition, two of our double-occupancy rooms are fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. The facility serves Alaska Native and non-Native patients receiving health care services in Sitka. We accept Medicaid payments for lodging, meals, and transportation. Please call 907.966.8399 for 24/7 airport shuttle service.

Meals are provided at the SEARHC Island Skillet Cafe, located on the ground floor of the main hospital building. For more information, please call 907.966.8399.

Patient Housing Courtesy Shuttle  |  907.966.8399
Transportation to and from the airport or ferry terminal is available. If we are not at the airport or ferry terminal when you arrive, please give us a call.


Purchased & Referred Care (PRC)

PRC funding is for referred medical services not directly available at SEARHC and is available to all eligible patients.

Basic Requirements

  • Authorization is required before non-emergency treatment is started
  • A SEARHC physician must initiate all referrals for medical care
  • A referral does not mean payment will be authorized
  • Outside care must be approved by PRC
  • For SEARHC to cover the cost of outside emergency medical care, PRC must be notified within 72 hours of the start of emergency services (65 years and older have 30 days to notify)
  • IHS facilities must be used instead of private facilities, when available

Eligibility for Services

To qualify for PRC services, the patient must meet PRC eligibility requirements that include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Documented status as Alaska Native/American Indian
  • Alaska resident for the prior 180 days with intent to remain in Alaska
  • Non-Indian women who are pregnant with an eligible Alaska Native/American Indian child or the mother of an Alaska Native/American Indian child up to six weeks postpartum
  • Children of an eligible Alaska Native/American Indian, including non-Indian foster children, adopted children, stepchildren, legal wards or orphans until the age of 19

Treatment Not Covered by Purchased & Referred Care

  • Medical services provided by a non-tribal facility or provider that has not been authorized by PRC
  • Medical services provided by a non-SEARHC health care provider not referred by a SEARHC physician and authorized by SEARHC PRC
  • Obstetric deliveries at non-tribal hospitals, unless due to a life-threatening emergency
  • Inpatient or outpatient mental health services
  • Inpatient or outpatient substance abuse treatment programs
  • Medical care considered investigational or experimental
  • Nursing home or long-term care facilities
  • Routine dental services
  • PRC will not authorize payment to a non-tribal facility if a tribal health facility was open and available to provide the needed care

This is not an all-inclusive list. Please contact PRC about coverage with any additional questions.

Purchased & Referred Care Program

222 Tongass Drive, Sitka, Alaska 99835
Toll-free Phone: 866.966.8316 | Fax: 907.966.8340