Sitka Community Hospital
Juneau-based healthcare executive Charles Clement has guided SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) since 2012. Under Charles Clement’s tenure, SEARHC recently expanded its network of healthcare providers into the city of Sitka through a recent merger.
To improve its ability to provide high-quality healthcare to its patients, SEARHC recently consolidated with Sitka Community Hospital. In April, SEARHC completed negotiations with Sitka’s Assemly to take over the city’s hospital facilities. After a delayed closing date, all transactions were completed on August 1.
More than 130 former Sitka employees will join SEARHC as staff. The healthcare group will now provide outpatient health services as well as urgent, long-term and emergency care at five facilities previously managed by the hospital.
All health systems will operate under new names associated with the SEARHC consortium. Sitka residents will be able to access all care services throughout the transition period. SEARHC has also expanded the city’s urgent care services to include imaging and lab testing.
Alaska Resilience Initiative
A Native of Tsimshian and Athabascan heritage, Charles Clement holds a degree in economics and political science from Northern Arizona University. Since 2012, he has led the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) as president and CEO. Outside of work, he supports charitable organizations including the Alaska Children’s Trust (ACT).
Since its establishment in 1988, the ACT has worked to prevent child abuse and other adverse childhood experiences through programs such as the Alaska Resilience Initiative (ARI). The ARI is a collaboration among non-profits, state, and government organizations aimed at healing systemic trauma and promoting mental health and justice. The ARI provides national and state-specific information about trauma, as well as resources such as tailored, in-person trainings. Volunteers join in the mission to prevent and heal childhood trauma by joining in periodic workgroupsthat advocate for policy and budget changes in hospital and school systems across the state. For more information about the Alaska Children’s Trust or the valuable work of the ARI, visit www.akresilience.org.
SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium
Charles Clement, who is Tsimshian and Athabaskan, serves as president and CEO of the Native American-run Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) serving 26 Alaskan communities. As an aspect of his work, Charles Clement and the SEARHC board of directors recently awarded grants to 15 of the communities the organization serves, including $50,000 to the Skagway Traditional Council.
The Skagway Traditional Council is a federally recognized Native American tribe for the Skagway Tlingit and Haida Indians. The mission of the council is to uphold the tribe’s sovereignty and government and to protect and nurture their members economically and otherwise. The Council oversees several other projects, including the Sheldon Museum and the Sealaska Heritage Center.
The Council will be able to use the money from SEARHC within the year to support local Alaska Native and American Indian residents with recreation center memberships. They will also make improvements to area bathrooms, adding in grab bars and non-slip mats for safety. In addition, the Council will be able to make non-smoking patches available along with helmets for the region’s youth.
A graduate of the University of Alaska with a master’s degree in public administration, Charles Clement also participated in the Executive Leadership Program at Harvard Business School. Charles Clement leverages his experience to serve as president and CEO of the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC), which recently hosted high school students for a unique educational program.
From April 23 through April 26, SEARHC welcomed 17 Native American and Indian high school students to participate in the Ethel Lund Village Health Occupations Program (VHOP). The students were selected to visit SEARHC Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital for nearly a week to learn about the diverse array of health care careers in the community.
In addition to participating in a tour of the campus and a luncheon with SEARHC’s chief operating officer, students visited nursing stations and learned about the behavioral health and dental professions. Further, they enjoyed an overnight stay on Biorka Island, where they undertook communication and leadership training and met with Ethel Lund, the founder of SEARHC and VHOP.
Through the VHOP, SEARHC aims to expose students to the diverse menu of rewarding health care careers to encourage them to consider pursuing a career in which they can contribute to the health of the local community following graduation.
SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium
An accomplished public administrator with nearly two decades of experience, Charles Clement serves as the president and CEO of the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC). Overseeing around 1,000 employees, Charles Clement works with 15 board members in managing the consortium’s health care operations. SEARHC prides itself as one of the United States’ largest and oldest Native-run health organizations.
Last year, the SEARHC website posted about the Kick Butts Day initiative, in which advocates from all around the US speak out against the risks of tobacco use among youth. In March 2018, Juneau again participated in the annual initiative through various activities such as maintaining an information booth at Juneau Douglas High School and holding a “Kids in Jeopardy” game that centers on tobacco-related trivia.
According to statistics, tobacco use in Alaska claims 600 lives and results in $438 million in health care costs each year. Tobacco use is still the leading cause of preventable death in the United States.
During the Kick Butts Day initiative, health advocates clamor for strategies that can lead to a smoke-free generation. Tax increases and government prevention programs are seen as possible moves that could prove effective in the fight against youth tobacco use.
Charles Clement has been president and CEO of Juneau-based Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) since 2012, and brings more than two decades of experience in healthcare to the organization. One often-overlooked aspect of patient care Charles Clement oversees as the leader of SEARHC is healthcare security.
As part of a healthcare security initiative, Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital (MEH) has deployed the Hugs Wi-Fi Infant Protection system, as well as its Kisses Mother component. The Hugs and Kisses system protects infants from abduction anywhere within a hospital’s wireless network, using an ankle monitor with a tamper-proof detection band. Hospital administrators can track a monitored child anywhere within the hospital’s wireless area, and the detection of infants outside the labor and delivery unit with no staff transportation record automatically triggers an alarm. The Kisses component includes a wrist monitor for the mother, which notifies staff that mother and infant are together when the child and mother monitors are sufficiently close.
The implementation of this program is part of SEARHC’s commitment to patient safety and security. Hugs and Kisses is one of many such upgrades recently implemented at MEH to improve the quality of patient care.
Patient Housing Facility
Charles Clement serves as the president and chief executive officer of the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC). An Alaska native, Charles Clement also supports the nonprofit Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, which operates various programs and the Anchorage-based Alaska Native Medical Center (ANMC) to provide health services to members of the state’s indigenous population.
In the first half of 2017, the ANMC opened a new Patient Housing facility. This large, standalone edifice was built to accommodate the more than six in 10 patients who seek treatment at the Medical Center from outside of the Anchorage area. Offering guests comfortable accommodations and convenient access to the medical facilities, it is part of the Center’s plan to improve the overall health care experience of its patients.
During the first six months of operations, guests who stayed at Patient Housing completed surveys about their experience. In August, the Medical Center reported the results. Most guests responded positively. Based on 1,202 surveys, Patient Housing earned a 91.1 percent customer satisfaction rate. The facility’s general manager, Phil Degnan, notes that those results surpassed his expectations.
Patient Housing welcomes suggestions on ways to enhance its services. Recent improvements that have been made, based on customer feedback, include new bed frames and improved assistance in helping guests get from the airport to Patient Housing.