YCHC Newsletter

Updated: Jul 5

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Yakutat Community Health Center Upcoming Closures: July 4th, September 5th.

Brittany Johnson receives Certification as a Community Health Aide

Developed in the 1960’s in response to a number of health concerns, the Community Health Aide Program (CHAP) finds its origins in the tuberculosis epidemic, high infant mortality and high rates of injury in rural Alaska. In 1968, CHAP received formal recognition and congressional funding. The long history of cooperation and coordination between federal and state governments as well as Native tribal health organizations has facilitated improved health status in rural Alaska.

CHAP now consists of a network of approximately 550 Community Health Aides/Practitioners (CHA/Ps) in more than 170 rural Alaska villages. CHA/Ps work within the guidelines of the 2006 Alaska Community Health Aide/Practitioner Manual, which outlines assessment and treatment protocols. There is an established referral relationship that includes advanced practice providers (APP’s), physicians, regional hospitals and the Alaska Native Medical Center. Additionally, providers such as public health nurses, physicians and dentists make visits to villages to see clients in collaboration with the CHA/Ps.

The Alaska Area Native Health Service (AANHS) has the responsibility of providing medical and health-related services to Indian Health Service beneficiaries residing in Alaska. These services are provided by tribal organizations within the Alaska Native Health Care System. The village-based CHA/Ps are a vital link in the delivery system.

Community Health Aides (CHAs) are selected by their communities prior to receiving training. Training centers are located in Anchorage, Bethel, and Nome. Traditionally, there are four sessions of CHA training, each of which lasts three to four weeks. Currently, there are distance learning opportunities for session training limiting time spent away from their communities. Between sessions, CHAs work in their clinics completing a skills list and practicum. After successfully completing the four-session training curriculum and a clinical skills preceptorship and examination, the CHA qualifies as a Community Health Practitioner (CHP). CHA/Ps at any level of training may obtain certification by the Community Health Aide Program Certification Board (CHAPCB).

Having Brittany attain this certification is a major step forward for the Yakutat Community Health Center, as well as, our Community. Please join us in congratulating Brittany Johnson on obtaining this amazing achievement!


Keeping to your dental appointment is crucial to your dental health and it is as important as your yearly health check up. Most people assume as long as their teeth do not ache, gums do not bleed and mouth does not have an odor, their dental health is in perfect order. On the contrary, such people could be having dental problems without even realizing it.

4 Reasons Why You Should Never Forget to Visit Your Dentist Twice a Year: