My YKHealth

2022 Health Aide of the Year awarded to Napakiak Health Aide Candace Nelson

YKHC’s Health Aide of the Year award recognizes a Community Health Aide for their contribution, dedication, and sacrifice while in service. Recipients of this award demonstrate excellence on all levels as an employee and a member of this tribal health organization. The health aide receiving this award embodies YKHC’s mission of “Working Together to Achieve Excellent Health” and personifies YKHC’s values of optimism, compassion, pursuit of excellence, personal growth, importance of family, elder knowledge and, most of all, trust in their day to day activities. This health aide has established a noticeable, positive impact to the quality of care delivered in the region.

At YKHC’s Tribal Gathering, YKHC recognized Candace Nelson of Napakiak as 2022’s Health Aide of the Year.

Candace Nelson started her career with YKHC’s Community Health Aide Program in 2010 as a Community Health Aide Trainee. She completed the Community Health Aide Program in August 2014. Candace is currently a Community Health Practitioner (CHP) based out of the village of Napakiak. Candace has been described as an open, friendly, and a caring health care professional. Throughout her session trainings she had demonstrated competence, maturity and professionalism with the training staff, patients, and coworkers. She is an intelligent and thoughtful individual with a strong understanding of her function as a Community Health Practitioner in remote Alaska.

Diligent, dedicated, and focused are a few words used to describe Candace Nelson. She has been working as a Community Health Aide for roughly 12 years. She has been the sole and primary CHP in Napakiak for the past 2 years. She serves a community of roughly 350 individuals providing acute, preventative, and urgent care. She is continuously on-call with little relief, and does so without complaint. Candace also volunteers to provide remote, over-the-phone coverage for villages without health aides, ensuring unmanned communities receive urgent care coverage.

YKHC is greatly appreciative of all the hard work Candace does for her community and communities that she covers.

In his speech during the ceremony, Field Supervision Coordinator Joseph Okitkun congratulated Candace and provided her with a plaque, a down jacket and a round trip ticket on Alaska Airlines. Addressing Candace, he said, “May you be proud of the work you do, the person you are, and the difference you make. Keep up the awesome work!”