Heroin Abuse Becomes One of Alaska’s Largest Public Health Problems

Heroin Abuse
Heroin Abuse

 

The CEO of the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC), Charles Clement is a longtime healthcare executive currently based in Juneau, Alaska. As part of his professional commitment to a healthy Alaska, Charles Clement closely follows the public health crises most commonly impacting his state.

The state of Alaska has traditionally had some of the nation’s highest rates of domestic violence, child abuse, and chemical dependency. Alcoholism is widespread, and prescription drug addiction is on the rise. Research now suggests that heroin abuse in the state is growing and approaching dangerous levels.

Heroin use has nearly quadrupled in Alaska since 2002. Overdoses are also on the rise, causing a crisis in public health as well as a large financial burden on the medical system. The current rate of heroin-related death in the state is approximately 2.7 deaths per 100,000 people, which is triple the 2008 rate and 42% higher than the national average.

Officials blame some of this crisis on over-reliance on opioid pain relievers. People become addicted to prescription drugs and then fall back on heroin later. The drug has also become relatively inexpensive lately, exacerbating the problem.

The Halibut Coalition Protects One of Alaska’s Greatest Resources

Halibut Coalition pic
Halibut Coalition
Image: halibutcoalition.org

As the president and CEO of the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium, Charles Clement brings quality healthcare to thousands of residents. As part of his commitment to a healthy and prosperous Alaska, Charles Clement is also a member of the Halibut Coalition.

The Halibut Coalition exists to preserve and protect the Pacific region’s halibut population. It encourages responsible fishing practices and seeks to promote fair distribution of this valuable resource across commercial and recreational users.

The organization is currently focusing on legal avenues to protect their interests. The Coalition has expressed concern about specific commercial quotas placed on the industry. The impacts of new quotas could have far reaching implications for fishermen and the industries and communities surrounding them.

Similarly, the Coalition is involved in ongoing debates with Congress and the Senate to further their efforts. Members enjoyed recent success with H.R. 1335 in the House, but this resolution may face a veto in the White House.

Scientists, Doctors Claim Zika Could Present a Danger to the Olympics

Zika and the Olympics pic
Zika and the Olympics
Image: ecommerce-journal.com

Charles Clement has served as the president and CEO of Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium in Juneau, Alaska, since 2012. In addition to his professional work on a local level, such as developing infrastructure to support 18 Alaskan communities, Charles Clement also closely follows emerging public health trends across the world.

With growing international concerns about the Zika virus, a group consisting of 150 doctors, scientists, and medical ethicists have publicly called for the upcoming Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro to be pushed back or perhaps even relocated. In a letter to the World Health Organization (WHO) the group claims that the virus represents a danger to the athletes competing in the games, as well as spectators and media who will travel from outside the country to attend.

For its part, WHO has released a statement asserting that cancelling or moving the games will have no impact on the spreading of the virus. The group goes on say that numerous other countries have reported Zika outbreaks, yet travel within those countries is still safe, granted travelers follow the proper advice and precautions. WHO did, however, advise pregnant women not to travel to any area where the Zika virus has been reported, including Rio de Janeiro.

Coverage Offered by Alaska’s Healing Hand Foundation

Healing Hand Foundation pic
Healing Hand Foundation
Image: hhf-ak.org

Charles Clement is the CEO and president of the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium in Juneau. A business management professional with 19 years of experience, Charles Clement has served on the board of numerous associations and currently serves as a director for the Healing Hand Foundation.

The Healing Hand Foundation, established in 2001, assists the Native and veteran populations of Alaska who require additional funding for medical expenses not covered by state health insurance or private insurance companies.

The foundation offers financial assistance to those seeking three categories of medical need:

1. Medical Goods. These items include supplies and equipment such as wheelchairs, eyeglasses, walkers, and dentures.

2. Pharmaceuticals. Some medications, such as specialized cancer or blood pressure drugs, are not covered by health insurance.

3. Patient Travel. If a referral for treatment requires a patient to travel to a different city, Healing Hand Foundation can cover escort travel expenses.

Individuals can support the Healing Hand Foundation through a basic donation, or they can choose to have a set contribution deducted from their payroll each period.

Nurse Line – The Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium

Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium pic
Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium
Image: searhc.org

A business professional with nearly two decades of experience, Charles Clement is the CEO and president of the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) in Juneau. Charles Clement manages 1,000 employees and has developed infrastructure in support of 18 communities in Southeast Alaska, in addition to overseeing government contracts and federal grants for the organization.

SEARHC is a nonprofit organization established in 1975 as a result of the Indian Self-Determination Act. It is the work of the consortium’s to provide excellent health care to Alaskan communities.

One of the services offered by SEARHC is its Nurse Advice Line, a phone-in advice hotline that allows individuals to get help during hours when clinics are closed. Available in 12 communities, the service enables patients to speak to a professional such as a medical services representative or a registered triage nurse when faced with unexpected health concerns.

The Nurse Advice Line can help patients determine whether or not their present health concern requires immediate medical attention, advice which can be of great benefit particularly to those residing in rural areas. The nurse can talk the patient through the steps of at-home care in the case of minor concerns or connect the patient directly with emergency services if the situation warrants.

The Nurse Advice Line is also available to those who require answers to general health-related inquiries.

Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium to Open New Patient Housing

Healthy Alaska Natives Foundation pic
Healthy Alaska Natives Foundation
Image: inspiringgoodhealth.org

Since 2012, Charles Clement has served as the president and CEO of Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) in Juneau. An involved health care industry professional, Charles Clement maintains affiliations with many similar organizations, including the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, which works to promote the health and well-being of the state’s Alaska Native and American Indian community.

Through its charitable arm, the Healthy Alaska Natives Foundation, the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium is currently working to raise funds for the construction of a new housing facility for patients of the Alaska Native Medical Center. When it opens in early 2017, the six-floor facility will provide 202 rooms and a variety of amenities for those who travel to Anchorage for health services at the medical center.

In addition to featuring communal kitchens and gathering areas, the new patient housing facility will offer a business center, direct access to the Alaska Native Medical Center, and special accommodations for expectant mothers and their families. The Healthy Alaska Natives Foundation recently raised $108,000 for the project at the 2016 Raven’s Ball, but it still needs additional support. For more information, or to make a contribution to the project, visit www.inspiringgoodhealth.org.

The Alaska Children’s Trust and the Alaska Afterschool Network

Alaska Children’s Trust Image: alaskachildrenstrust.org
Alaska Children’s Trust
Image: alaskachildrenstrust.org

A health care industry executive with nearly 20 years of experience, Charles Clement serves as the president and CEO of Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) in Juneau. Alongside his work at the company, Charles Clement gives back to the community through his support of local organizations, such as the Alaska Children’s Trust.

In its efforts to support the needs of children throughout the state, the Alaska Children’s Trust oversees a variety of programs and activities that seek to strengthen families, prevent abuse and neglect, and improve access to learning opportunities. Since 2013, the group has managed the Alaska Afterschool Network, which is supported by the State of Alaska Department of Education as well as local nonprofit groups.

The ultimate goal of the Alaska Afterschool Network is to improve student performance and promote healthy youth development through high-quality afterschool programming. To achieve this goal, the Network creates collaborative opportunities within the afterschool community, raises awareness about the importance of afterschool activities, and advocates for public policies and systems that support afterschool programming throughout Alaska.

For more information about the Alaska Children’s Trust and the Alaska Afterschool Network, visit www.alaskachildrenstrust.org.