Cost savings result in funding for new Chevak Health Clinic

Funding is now in place for the new Chevak Health Clinic, The Denali Commission and YKHC announced July 10. The ability to fund the Chevak Health Clinic at this time was realized from cost savings on previously constructed YKHC clinics. Construction is expected to begin this summer for the 3,200 square foot healthcare facility, serving Chevak’s 970 residents.

“The current Chevak Clinic is old and problems arise during the winter months that make it unsanitary for it to be serving the staff and clients. The new clinic will better serve the needs of the community with modern equipment and higher skilled professionals,” said Joseph Slats, Chevak Tribal Administrator.

Tessa Axelson, Sr. Program Manager at the Denali Commission, said, “YKHC has a lengthy history of maximizing cost share funding and completing clinic projects under budget. Chevak is another example of their dedication to ensuring communities in their region have access to updated clinic facilities.”

YKHC cost management systems include continued use of a prototype design which requires only code upgrade and site adaptation fees for each new clinic constructed. The prototype design also increases construction efficiency, decreasing construction time and construction waste. YKHC has been successful in completing previous clinics on time and well within budget at roughly $700 per square foot. Additionally, the majority of the work is accomplished utilizing YKHC’s own locally developed work force.

YKHC President/CEO Gene Peltola said,  “Our long-term partnership with the Denali Commission—building more than 30 village health clinics and subregional clinics—exemplifies our mission of ‘Working Together to Achieve Excellent Health.’ And with funding becoming more scarce, the fact that the money we’ve saved over the years can now help fund one more clinic is evidence of our success in bringing quality health care closer to home for the people of our region.”

Historically, many funding partners have contributed to the construction of YKHC clinics, including the US Department of Housing and Urban Development – Indian Community Development Block Grant program, the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority, the Indian Health Service – Tribal Equipment fund, and the Denali Commission.

Dennis M. Jones, City Administrator for the City of Chevak, said, “This is a day that has been a long time coming. The leaders of Chevak, Alaska, would like to thank all those that have worked on getting a new clinic for the community of Chevak. Thank you Denali Commission for granting our desire to see a building that will benefit the whole community, and even visitors to our community. Every entity in Chevak worked to ensure that this would come to fruition.”

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