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Southcentral Foundation:New Clinic in the Mat-Su Valley

Alaska Native and American Indian people to benefit from construction

of new, full-service primary care center in their own backyard

ANCHORAGE, ALASKA (Sept. 3, 2010) – Southcentral Foundation received good news this week with the announcement of a $40 million loan for the construction of its new Valley Native Primary Care Center through the USDA Rural Development Community Facilities Program with an additional $10 million commercial loan from Wells Fargo. Additionally, financial support for operations, primarily staffing, is pending final agreement with the Indian Health Service through its Joint Venture Construction Program.

Population growth has dictated the critical need for this new, full-service primary care center. The Matanuska-Susitna Borough is the fastest growing borough in the state. With the economic and social pressures in the villages, coupled with the high cost of housing in Anchorage, people are moving to the area from rural Alaska at unprecedented rates. In fact, the Alaska Native and American Indian population in the Borough is expected to nearly double over the next decade—growing at a much faster rate than the general population.

“The plans for the new primary care center were conceptualized in collaboration with the Chickaloon Village Traditional Council and the Knik Tribal Council after a careful review of the data and listening sessions with our customers from the Matanuska-Susitna Borough,” said Ileen Sylvester, Southcentral Foundation Vice President of Executive Tribal Services. “We are looking forward to the construction of this facility, knowing what an important role it will play in meeting the needs of this growing population.”

Currently, Southcentral Foundation serves its customer-owners in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough at a 5,457-square-foot leased space in a strip mall in Wasilla. While the clinic provides outpatient primary care services and some behavioral health services, space constraints severely limit the services that can be provided and the number of people that can be served.

The proposed 93,652-square-foot facility will expand primary care, behavioral health, dietary, radiology, and pharmacy services to meet the existing and projected needs of the area. Additionally, space will be available to accommodate optometry and dental services.

“The new primary care center will help close the gap in health and related services for Alaska Native and American Indian people in the Mat-Su Valley,” said Southcentral Foundation President/ CEO Katherine Gottlieb.  “Southcentral Foundation and the Tribal councils are able to move forward with these plans because of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009—ARRA put the necessary mechanisms in place to help fund improvements to health care in areas where there are shortages.  We would like to thank USDA, our Congressional delegation, U.S. Sen. Inouye of Hawaii, and Indian Health Service Director Yvette Robideaux who worked to pass this legislation and improve the quality of life in communities like ours.”

“I’m glad to see our working relationship is fruitful, and I look forward to working together on the clinic so we can serve our people in the best possible way,” said Chickaloon Village Traditional Council Chief Gary Harrison  “It proves that tribes and corporations can work together.”

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