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TAHLEQUAH, Okla., Feb. 17, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- After several years of planning and negotiation with the federal government, the Cherokee Nation officially begins construction on the tribe's new 469,000-square-foot health facility. Hundreds turned out for a groundbreaking ceremony on Friday, including representatives from state, federal and tribal governments. When completed in 2019, it will be the largest health center of any tribe in the country. The new outpatient and primary care facility is being built next to the existing W.W. Hastings Hospital in Tahlequah. The four-story facility will feature 180 exam rooms; access to an MRI machine; 10 new cardiac, lung and kidney specialists, and, for the first time ever, an ambulatory surgery center. "This is a monumental day for the Cherokee Nation, and within just a couple of years, this state-of-the-art facility will be transformative in the lives of our citizens in northeast Oklahoma," said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker. "The Cherokee Nation has broken barriers in health care throughout Indian Country for years, and with the addition of the new facility and new services that will come with this facility, we will be pioneers in health care recognized throughout the entire nation." The facility is the outcome of the largest IHS-joint venture agreement ever between a tribe and the federal government. The Cherokee Nation is paying for the $200 million construction of the health center, while Indian Health Service has agreed to pay an estimated $80 million or more per year for at least 20 years for staffing and operation costs. Chief Baker testified before a congressional subcommittee in Washington, D.C., in 2014, advocating for the reopening of the joint venture application process so tribes could invest in health care infrastructure without straining the finances of the federal government. In 2015, Cherokee Nation was among few tribes selected for joint venture projects. When W.W. Hastings Hospital was built in Tahlequah in 1986, it was built for 100,000 patient visits per year. In 2016, Hastings saw nearly 400,000 patient visits and had to refer many patients out of the system for specialty services. "We are in dire need of an additional building on campus, since our current Hastings facility sees four times as many annual visits as it was constructed to host," said Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. "After more than 30 years of utilizing and maximizing that space, it's fulfilling to know that once complete it will be a major advancement in our ability to deliver the kinds of health care services our people want and deserve." The new facility will feature five surgical suites and two endoscopy suites inside its ambulatory surgical center. It will house a specialty clinic and feature 33 dental chairs, six eye exam rooms, three audiology testing booths and diagnostic imagining. It also expands space for several other services currently offered such as rehabilitation services, behavioral health, a wellness center and more.   "This top-rate facility will allow us to offer a level of health care and increased access to services in northeastern Oklahoma that weren't even thought possible before," said Cherokee Nation Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis. "On behalf of the Cherokee Nation Health Services staff, I thank Chief Baker, the Tribal Council and Cherokee Nation Businesses for giving us the opportunity to deliver first-class health care to our patients." In 2013, the tribe pledged for the first time to use $100 million from Cherokee Nation Businesses' casino profits to improve the Cherokee Nation's health care infrastructure. The funds expanded the Stilwell and Sallisaw health centers, built new health centers in Ochelata and Jay, and will be used for the new outpatient facility at Hastings. The original W.W. Hastings building will serve as the tribe's in-patient hospital. "The Cherokee Nation has never been more prosperous in its history, and with that prosperity we have invested in services that are a top priority for our people," said Cherokee Nation Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd. "That effort is evident in this new, state-of-the-art health facility. Our government and business officials have been diligent in managing and growing our resources, and our citizens today and future generations will reap the benefits of the work done by those officials." Childers Architects and HKS Architects are designing the LEED-certified facility, with Flintco serving as the construction manager while teaming with Cooper Construction. About 350 construction jobs and more than 850 new health jobs over time will be created from the project. Photo Cutline: Photo Cutline: (L to R) Cherokee Nation Businesses Board Member Gary Cooper, CEO Shawn Slaton, Cherokee Nation Health Services Deputy Executive Director Charles Grim, Indian Health Service Deputy Director of Field Operations Rear Adm. Kevin Meeks, Tribal Councilors Keith Austin and Janees Taylor, Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis, Chickasaw Nation Lt. Governor Jefferson Keel, Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr., Treasurer Lacey Horn, Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden, Principal Chief Bill John Baker, Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd, Tribal Council Deputy Speaker Victoria Vazquez, Tribal council Secretary Frankie Hargis, Tribal Councilors Rex Jordan, David Walkingstick, and Bryan Warner, Cherokee Spiritual Leader Crosslin Smith, Tribal Councilors Dick Lay and Harley Buzzard, CNB Board Members Dan Carter and Jerry Holderby, CNB Executive Vice President Chuck Garrett, Little Cherokee Ambassador Emma Fields, Jr. Lauryn Skye McCoy, Little Cherokee Ambassador Reese Henson, Miss Cherokee Sky Wildcat, W.W. Hastings Hospital CEO Brian Hail, Dr. James Stallcup and Dr. Stephen Jones   Photo Cutline: Rendering of the entrance of the new 469,000-square-foot outpatient health center to be built on the W.W. Hastings campus in Tahlequah.   About Cherokee Nation The Cherokee Nation is the federally recognized government of the Cherokee people and has inherent sovereign status recognized by treaty and law. The seat of tribal government is the W.W. Keeler Complex near Tahlequah, Oklahoma, the capital of the Cherokee Nation. With more than 340,000 citizens, 11,000 employees and a variety of tribal enterprises ranging from aerospace and defense contracts to entertainment venues, Cherokee Nation is one of the largest employers in northeastern Oklahoma and the largest tribal nation in the United States. To learn more, please visit www.cherokee.org. Editor's note: Find all the latest Cherokee Nation news at www.anadisgoi.com. Photos accompanying this release are available at: http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42199 http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42200


TAHLEQUAH, Okla., Feb. 17, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- After several years of planning and negotiation with the federal government, the Cherokee Nation officially begins construction on the tribe's new 469,000-square-foot health facility. Hundreds turned out for a groundbreaking ceremony on Friday, including representatives from state, federal and tribal governments. When completed in 2019, it will be the largest health center of any tribe in the country. The new outpatient and primary care facility is being built next to the existing W.W. Hastings Hospital in Tahlequah. The four-story facility will feature 180 exam rooms; access to an MRI machine; 10 new cardiac, lung and kidney specialists, and, for the first time ever, an ambulatory surgery center. "This is a monumental day for the Cherokee Nation, and within just a couple of years, this state-of-the-art facility will be transformative in the lives of our citizens in northeast Oklahoma," said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker. "The Cherokee Nation has broken barriers in health care throughout Indian Country for years, and with the addition of the new facility and new services that will come with this facility, we will be pioneers in health care recognized throughout the entire nation." The facility is the outcome of the largest IHS-joint venture agreement ever between a tribe and the federal government. The Cherokee Nation is paying for the $200 million construction of the health center, while Indian Health Service has agreed to pay an estimated $80 million or more per year for at least 20 years for staffing and operation costs. Chief Baker testified before a congressional subcommittee in Washington, D.C., in 2014, advocating for the reopening of the joint venture application process so tribes could invest in health care infrastructure without straining the finances of the federal government. In 2015, Cherokee Nation was among few tribes selected for joint venture projects. When W.W. Hastings Hospital was built in Tahlequah in 1986, it was built for 100,000 patient visits per year. In 2016, Hastings saw nearly 400,000 patient visits and had to refer many patients out of the system for specialty services. "We are in dire need of an additional building on campus, since our current Hastings facility sees four times as many annual visits as it was constructed to host," said Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. "After more than 30 years of utilizing and maximizing that space, it's fulfilling to know that once complete it will be a major advancement in our ability to deliver the kinds of health care services our people want and deserve." The new facility will feature five surgical suites and two endoscopy suites inside its ambulatory surgical center. It will house a specialty clinic and feature 33 dental chairs, six eye exam rooms, three audiology testing booths and diagnostic imagining. It also expands space for several other services currently offered such as rehabilitation services, behavioral health, a wellness center and more.   "This top-rate facility will allow us to offer a level of health care and increased access to services in northeastern Oklahoma that weren't even thought possible before," said Cherokee Nation Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis. "On behalf of the Cherokee Nation Health Services staff, I thank Chief Baker, the Tribal Council and Cherokee Nation Businesses for giving us the opportunity to deliver first-class health care to our patients." In 2013, the tribe pledged for the first time to use $100 million from Cherokee Nation Businesses' casino profits to improve the Cherokee Nation's health care infrastructure. The funds expanded the Stilwell and Sallisaw health centers, built new health centers in Ochelata and Jay, and will be used for the new outpatient facility at Hastings. The original W.W. Hastings building will serve as the tribe's in-patient hospital. "The Cherokee Nation has never been more prosperous in its history, and with that prosperity we have invested in services that are a top priority for our people," said Cherokee Nation Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd. "That effort is evident in this new, state-of-the-art health facility. Our government and business officials have been diligent in managing and growing our resources, and our citizens today and future generations will reap the benefits of the work done by those officials." Childers Architects and HKS Architects are designing the LEED-certified facility, with Flintco serving as the construction manager while teaming with Cooper Construction. About 350 construction jobs and more than 850 new health jobs over time will be created from the project. Photo Cutline: Photo Cutline: (L to R) Cherokee Nation Businesses Board Member Gary Cooper, CEO Shawn Slaton, Cherokee Nation Health Services Deputy Executive Director Charles Grim, Indian Health Service Deputy Director of Field Operations Rear Adm. Kevin Meeks, Tribal Councilors Keith Austin and Janees Taylor, Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis, Chickasaw Nation Lt. Governor Jefferson Keel, Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr., Treasurer Lacey Horn, Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden, Principal Chief Bill John Baker, Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd, Tribal Council Deputy Speaker Victoria Vazquez, Tribal council Secretary Frankie Hargis, Tribal Councilors Rex Jordan, David Walkingstick, and Bryan Warner, Cherokee Spiritual Leader Crosslin Smith, Tribal Councilors Dick Lay and Harley Buzzard, CNB Board Members Dan Carter and Jerry Holderby, CNB Executive Vice President Chuck Garrett, Little Cherokee Ambassador Emma Fields, Jr. Lauryn Skye McCoy, Little Cherokee Ambassador Reese Henson, Miss Cherokee Sky Wildcat, W.W. Hastings Hospital CEO Brian Hail, Dr. James Stallcup and Dr. Stephen Jones   Photo Cutline: Rendering of the entrance of the new 469,000-square-foot outpatient health center to be built on the W.W. Hastings campus in Tahlequah.   About Cherokee Nation The Cherokee Nation is the federally recognized government of the Cherokee people and has inherent sovereign status recognized by treaty and law. The seat of tribal government is the W.W. Keeler Complex near Tahlequah, Oklahoma, the capital of the Cherokee Nation. With more than 340,000 citizens, 11,000 employees and a variety of tribal enterprises ranging from aerospace and defense contracts to entertainment venues, Cherokee Nation is one of the largest employers in northeastern Oklahoma and the largest tribal nation in the United States. To learn more, please visit www.cherokee.org. Editor's note: Find all the latest Cherokee Nation news at www.anadisgoi.com. Photos accompanying this release are available at: http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42199 http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42200


TAHLEQUAH, Okla., Feb. 17, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- After several years of planning and negotiation with the federal government, the Cherokee Nation officially begins construction on the tribe's new 469,000-square-foot health facility. Hundreds turned out for a groundbreaking ceremony on Friday, including representatives from state, federal and tribal governments. When completed in 2019, it will be the largest health center of any tribe in the country. The new outpatient and primary care facility is being built next to the existing W.W. Hastings Hospital in Tahlequah. The four-story facility will feature 180 exam rooms; access to an MRI machine; 10 new cardiac, lung and kidney specialists, and, for the first time ever, an ambulatory surgery center. "This is a monumental day for the Cherokee Nation, and within just a couple of years, this state-of-the-art facility will be transformative in the lives of our citizens in northeast Oklahoma," said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker. "The Cherokee Nation has broken barriers in health care throughout Indian Country for years, and with the addition of the new facility and new services that will come with this facility, we will be pioneers in health care recognized throughout the entire nation." The facility is the outcome of the largest IHS-joint venture agreement ever between a tribe and the federal government. The Cherokee Nation is paying for the $200 million construction of the health center, while Indian Health Service has agreed to pay an estimated $80 million or more per year for at least 20 years for staffing and operation costs. Chief Baker testified before a congressional subcommittee in Washington, D.C., in 2014, advocating for the reopening of the joint venture application process so tribes could invest in health care infrastructure without straining the finances of the federal government. In 2015, Cherokee Nation was among few tribes selected for joint venture projects. When W.W. Hastings Hospital was built in Tahlequah in 1986, it was built for 100,000 patient visits per year. In 2016, Hastings saw nearly 400,000 patient visits and had to refer many patients out of the system for specialty services. "We are in dire need of an additional building on campus, since our current Hastings facility sees four times as many annual visits as it was constructed to host," said Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. "After more than 30 years of utilizing and maximizing that space, it's fulfilling to know that once complete it will be a major advancement in our ability to deliver the kinds of health care services our people want and deserve." The new facility will feature five surgical suites and two endoscopy suites inside its ambulatory surgical center. It will house a specialty clinic and feature 33 dental chairs, six eye exam rooms, three audiology testing booths and diagnostic imagining. It also expands space for several other services currently offered such as rehabilitation services, behavioral health, a wellness center and more.   "This top-rate facility will allow us to offer a level of health care and increased access to services in northeastern Oklahoma that weren't even thought possible before," said Cherokee Nation Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis. "On behalf of the Cherokee Nation Health Services staff, I thank Chief Baker, the Tribal Council and Cherokee Nation Businesses for giving us the opportunity to deliver first-class health care to our patients." In 2013, the tribe pledged for the first time to use $100 million from Cherokee Nation Businesses' casino profits to improve the Cherokee Nation's health care infrastructure. The funds expanded the Stilwell and Sallisaw health centers, built new health centers in Ochelata and Jay, and will be used for the new outpatient facility at Hastings. The original W.W. Hastings building will serve as the tribe's in-patient hospital. "The Cherokee Nation has never been more prosperous in its history, and with that prosperity we have invested in services that are a top priority for our people," said Cherokee Nation Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd. "That effort is evident in this new, state-of-the-art health facility. Our government and business officials have been diligent in managing and growing our resources, and our citizens today and future generations will reap the benefits of the work done by those officials." Childers Architects and HKS Architects are designing the LEED-certified facility, with Flintco serving as the construction manager while teaming with Cooper Construction. About 350 construction jobs and more than 850 new health jobs over time will be created from the project. Photo Cutline: Photo Cutline: (L to R) Cherokee Nation Businesses Board Member Gary Cooper, CEO Shawn Slaton, Cherokee Nation Health Services Deputy Executive Director Charles Grim, Indian Health Service Deputy Director of Field Operations Rear Adm. Kevin Meeks, Tribal Councilors Keith Austin and Janees Taylor, Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis, Chickasaw Nation Lt. Governor Jefferson Keel, Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr., Treasurer Lacey Horn, Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden, Principal Chief Bill John Baker, Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd, Tribal Council Deputy Speaker Victoria Vazquez, Tribal council Secretary Frankie Hargis, Tribal Councilors Rex Jordan, David Walkingstick, and Bryan Warner, Cherokee Spiritual Leader Crosslin Smith, Tribal Councilors Dick Lay and Harley Buzzard, CNB Board Members Dan Carter and Jerry Holderby, CNB Executive Vice President Chuck Garrett, Little Cherokee Ambassador Emma Fields, Jr. Lauryn Skye McCoy, Little Cherokee Ambassador Reese Henson, Miss Cherokee Sky Wildcat, W.W. Hastings Hospital CEO Brian Hail, Dr. James Stallcup and Dr. Stephen Jones   Photo Cutline: Rendering of the entrance of the new 469,000-square-foot outpatient health center to be built on the W.W. Hastings campus in Tahlequah.   About Cherokee Nation The Cherokee Nation is the federally recognized government of the Cherokee people and has inherent sovereign status recognized by treaty and law. The seat of tribal government is the W.W. Keeler Complex near Tahlequah, Oklahoma, the capital of the Cherokee Nation. With more than 340,000 citizens, 11,000 employees and a variety of tribal enterprises ranging from aerospace and defense contracts to entertainment venues, Cherokee Nation is one of the largest employers in northeastern Oklahoma and the largest tribal nation in the United States. To learn more, please visit www.cherokee.org. Editor's note: Find all the latest Cherokee Nation news at www.anadisgoi.com. Photos accompanying this release are available at: http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42199 http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42200


TAHLEQUAH, Okla., Feb. 17, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- After several years of planning and negotiation with the federal government, the Cherokee Nation officially begins construction on the tribe's new 469,000-square-foot health facility. Hundreds turned out for a groundbreaking ceremony on Friday, including representatives from state, federal and tribal governments. When completed in 2019, it will be the largest health center of any tribe in the country. The new outpatient and primary care facility is being built next to the existing W.W. Hastings Hospital in Tahlequah. The four-story facility will feature 180 exam rooms; access to an MRI machine; 10 new cardiac, lung and kidney specialists, and, for the first time ever, an ambulatory surgery center. "This is a monumental day for the Cherokee Nation, and within just a couple of years, this state-of-the-art facility will be transformative in the lives of our citizens in northeast Oklahoma," said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker. "The Cherokee Nation has broken barriers in health care throughout Indian Country for years, and with the addition of the new facility and new services that will come with this facility, we will be pioneers in health care recognized throughout the entire nation." The facility is the outcome of the largest IHS-joint venture agreement ever between a tribe and the federal government. The Cherokee Nation is paying for the $200 million construction of the health center, while Indian Health Service has agreed to pay an estimated $80 million or more per year for at least 20 years for staffing and operation costs. Chief Baker testified before a congressional subcommittee in Washington, D.C., in 2014, advocating for the reopening of the joint venture application process so tribes could invest in health care infrastructure without straining the finances of the federal government. In 2015, Cherokee Nation was among few tribes selected for joint venture projects. When W.W. Hastings Hospital was built in Tahlequah in 1986, it was built for 100,000 patient visits per year. In 2016, Hastings saw nearly 400,000 patient visits and had to refer many patients out of the system for specialty services. "We are in dire need of an additional building on campus, since our current Hastings facility sees four times as many annual visits as it was constructed to host," said Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. "After more than 30 years of utilizing and maximizing that space, it's fulfilling to know that once complete it will be a major advancement in our ability to deliver the kinds of health care services our people want and deserve." The new facility will feature five surgical suites and two endoscopy suites inside its ambulatory surgical center. It will house a specialty clinic and feature 33 dental chairs, six eye exam rooms, three audiology testing booths and diagnostic imagining. It also expands space for several other services currently offered such as rehabilitation services, behavioral health, a wellness center and more.   "This top-rate facility will allow us to offer a level of health care and increased access to services in northeastern Oklahoma that weren't even thought possible before," said Cherokee Nation Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis. "On behalf of the Cherokee Nation Health Services staff, I thank Chief Baker, the Tribal Council and Cherokee Nation Businesses for giving us the opportunity to deliver first-class health care to our patients." In 2013, the tribe pledged for the first time to use $100 million from Cherokee Nation Businesses' casino profits to improve the Cherokee Nation's health care infrastructure. The funds expanded the Stilwell and Sallisaw health centers, built new health centers in Ochelata and Jay, and will be used for the new outpatient facility at Hastings. The original W.W. Hastings building will serve as the tribe's in-patient hospital. "The Cherokee Nation has never been more prosperous in its history, and with that prosperity we have invested in services that are a top priority for our people," said Cherokee Nation Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd. "That effort is evident in this new, state-of-the-art health facility. Our government and business officials have been diligent in managing and growing our resources, and our citizens today and future generations will reap the benefits of the work done by those officials." Childers Architects and HKS Architects are designing the LEED-certified facility, with Flintco serving as the construction manager while teaming with Cooper Construction. About 350 construction jobs and more than 850 new health jobs over time will be created from the project. Photo Cutline: Photo Cutline: (L to R) Cherokee Nation Businesses Board Member Gary Cooper, CEO Shawn Slaton, Cherokee Nation Health Services Deputy Executive Director Charles Grim, Indian Health Service Deputy Director of Field Operations Rear Adm. Kevin Meeks, Tribal Councilors Keith Austin and Janees Taylor, Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis, Chickasaw Nation Lt. Governor Jefferson Keel, Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr., Treasurer Lacey Horn, Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden, Principal Chief Bill John Baker, Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd, Tribal Council Deputy Speaker Victoria Vazquez, Tribal council Secretary Frankie Hargis, Tribal Councilors Rex Jordan, David Walkingstick, and Bryan Warner, Cherokee Spiritual Leader Crosslin Smith, Tribal Councilors Dick Lay and Harley Buzzard, CNB Board Members Dan Carter and Jerry Holderby, CNB Executive Vice President Chuck Garrett, Little Cherokee Ambassador Emma Fields, Jr. Lauryn Skye McCoy, Little Cherokee Ambassador Reese Henson, Miss Cherokee Sky Wildcat, W.W. Hastings Hospital CEO Brian Hail, Dr. James Stallcup and Dr. Stephen Jones   Photo Cutline: Rendering of the entrance of the new 469,000-square-foot outpatient health center to be built on the W.W. Hastings campus in Tahlequah.   About Cherokee Nation The Cherokee Nation is the federally recognized government of the Cherokee people and has inherent sovereign status recognized by treaty and law. The seat of tribal government is the W.W. Keeler Complex near Tahlequah, Oklahoma, the capital of the Cherokee Nation. With more than 340,000 citizens, 11,000 employees and a variety of tribal enterprises ranging from aerospace and defense contracts to entertainment venues, Cherokee Nation is one of the largest employers in northeastern Oklahoma and the largest tribal nation in the United States. To learn more, please visit www.cherokee.org. Editor's note: Find all the latest Cherokee Nation news at www.anadisgoi.com. Photos accompanying this release are available at: http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42199 http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42200


TAHLEQUAH, Okla., Feb. 17, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- After several years of planning and negotiation with the federal government, the Cherokee Nation officially begins construction on the tribe's new 469,000-square-foot health facility. Hundreds turned out for a groundbreaking ceremony on Friday, including representatives from state, federal and tribal governments. When completed in 2019, it will be the largest health center of any tribe in the country. The new outpatient and primary care facility is being built next to the existing W.W. Hastings Hospital in Tahlequah. The four-story facility will feature 180 exam rooms; access to an MRI machine; 10 new cardiac, lung and kidney specialists, and, for the first time ever, an ambulatory surgery center. "This is a monumental day for the Cherokee Nation, and within just a couple of years, this state-of-the-art facility will be transformative in the lives of our citizens in northeast Oklahoma," said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker. "The Cherokee Nation has broken barriers in health care throughout Indian Country for years, and with the addition of the new facility and new services that will come with this facility, we will be pioneers in health care recognized throughout the entire nation." The facility is the outcome of the largest IHS-joint venture agreement ever between a tribe and the federal government. The Cherokee Nation is paying for the $200 million construction of the health center, while Indian Health Service has agreed to pay an estimated $80 million or more per year for at least 20 years for staffing and operation costs. Chief Baker testified before a congressional subcommittee in Washington, D.C., in 2014, advocating for the reopening of the joint venture application process so tribes could invest in health care infrastructure without straining the finances of the federal government. In 2015, Cherokee Nation was among few tribes selected for joint venture projects. When W.W. Hastings Hospital was built in Tahlequah in 1986, it was built for 100,000 patient visits per year. In 2016, Hastings saw nearly 400,000 patient visits and had to refer many patients out of the system for specialty services. "We are in dire need of an additional building on campus, since our current Hastings facility sees four times as many annual visits as it was constructed to host," said Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. "After more than 30 years of utilizing and maximizing that space, it's fulfilling to know that once complete it will be a major advancement in our ability to deliver the kinds of health care services our people want and deserve." The new facility will feature five surgical suites and two endoscopy suites inside its ambulatory surgical center. It will house a specialty clinic and feature 33 dental chairs, six eye exam rooms, three audiology testing booths and diagnostic imagining. It also expands space for several other services currently offered such as rehabilitation services, behavioral health, a wellness center and more.   "This top-rate facility will allow us to offer a level of health care and increased access to services in northeastern Oklahoma that weren't even thought possible before," said Cherokee Nation Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis. "On behalf of the Cherokee Nation Health Services staff, I thank Chief Baker, the Tribal Council and Cherokee Nation Businesses for giving us the opportunity to deliver first-class health care to our patients." In 2013, the tribe pledged for the first time to use $100 million from Cherokee Nation Businesses' casino profits to improve the Cherokee Nation's health care infrastructure. The funds expanded the Stilwell and Sallisaw health centers, built new health centers in Ochelata and Jay, and will be used for the new outpatient facility at Hastings. The original W.W. Hastings building will serve as the tribe's in-patient hospital. "The Cherokee Nation has never been more prosperous in its history, and with that prosperity we have invested in services that are a top priority for our people," said Cherokee Nation Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd. "That effort is evident in this new, state-of-the-art health facility. Our government and business officials have been diligent in managing and growing our resources, and our citizens today and future generations will reap the benefits of the work done by those officials." Childers Architects and HKS Architects are designing the LEED-certified facility, with Flintco serving as the construction manager while teaming with Cooper Construction. About 350 construction jobs and more than 850 new health jobs over time will be created from the project. Photo Cutline: Photo Cutline: (L to R) Cherokee Nation Businesses Board Member Gary Cooper, CEO Shawn Slaton, Cherokee Nation Health Services Deputy Executive Director Charles Grim, Indian Health Service Deputy Director of Field Operations Rear Adm. Kevin Meeks, Tribal Councilors Keith Austin and Janees Taylor, Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis, Chickasaw Nation Lt. Governor Jefferson Keel, Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr., Treasurer Lacey Horn, Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden, Principal Chief Bill John Baker, Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd, Tribal Council Deputy Speaker Victoria Vazquez, Tribal council Secretary Frankie Hargis, Tribal Councilors Rex Jordan, David Walkingstick, and Bryan Warner, Cherokee Spiritual Leader Crosslin Smith, Tribal Councilors Dick Lay and Harley Buzzard, CNB Board Members Dan Carter and Jerry Holderby, CNB Executive Vice President Chuck Garrett, Little Cherokee Ambassador Emma Fields, Jr. Lauryn Skye McCoy, Little Cherokee Ambassador Reese Henson, Miss Cherokee Sky Wildcat, W.W. Hastings Hospital CEO Brian Hail, Dr. James Stallcup and Dr. Stephen Jones   Photo Cutline: Rendering of the entrance of the new 469,000-square-foot outpatient health center to be built on the W.W. Hastings campus in Tahlequah.   About Cherokee Nation The Cherokee Nation is the federally recognized government of the Cherokee people and has inherent sovereign status recognized by treaty and law. The seat of tribal government is the W.W. Keeler Complex near Tahlequah, Oklahoma, the capital of the Cherokee Nation. With more than 340,000 citizens, 11,000 employees and a variety of tribal enterprises ranging from aerospace and defense contracts to entertainment venues, Cherokee Nation is one of the largest employers in northeastern Oklahoma and the largest tribal nation in the United States. To learn more, please visit www.cherokee.org. Editor's note: Find all the latest Cherokee Nation news at www.anadisgoi.com. Photos accompanying this release are available at: http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42199 http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42200


TAHLEQUAH, Okla., Feb. 17, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- After several years of planning and negotiation with the federal government, the Cherokee Nation officially begins construction on the tribe's new 469,000-square-foot health facility. Hundreds turned out for a groundbreaking ceremony on Friday, including representatives from state, federal and tribal governments. When completed in 2019, it will be the largest health center of any tribe in the country. The new outpatient and primary care facility is being built next to the existing W.W. Hastings Hospital in Tahlequah. The four-story facility will feature 180 exam rooms; access to an MRI machine; 10 new cardiac, lung and kidney specialists, and, for the first time ever, an ambulatory surgery center. "This is a monumental day for the Cherokee Nation, and within just a couple of years, this state-of-the-art facility will be transformative in the lives of our citizens in northeast Oklahoma," said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker. "The Cherokee Nation has broken barriers in health care throughout Indian Country for years, and with the addition of the new facility and new services that will come with this facility, we will be pioneers in health care recognized throughout the entire nation." The facility is the outcome of the largest IHS-joint venture agreement ever between a tribe and the federal government. The Cherokee Nation is paying for the $200 million construction of the health center, while Indian Health Service has agreed to pay an estimated $80 million or more per year for at least 20 years for staffing and operation costs. Chief Baker testified before a congressional subcommittee in Washington, D.C., in 2014, advocating for the reopening of the joint venture application process so tribes could invest in health care infrastructure without straining the finances of the federal government. In 2015, Cherokee Nation was among few tribes selected for joint venture projects. When W.W. Hastings Hospital was built in Tahlequah in 1986, it was built for 100,000 patient visits per year. In 2016, Hastings saw nearly 400,000 patient visits and had to refer many patients out of the system for specialty services. "We are in dire need of an additional building on campus, since our current Hastings facility sees four times as many annual visits as it was constructed to host," said Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. "After more than 30 years of utilizing and maximizing that space, it's fulfilling to know that once complete it will be a major advancement in our ability to deliver the kinds of health care services our people want and deserve." The new facility will feature five surgical suites and two endoscopy suites inside its ambulatory surgical center. It will house a specialty clinic and feature 33 dental chairs, six eye exam rooms, three audiology testing booths and diagnostic imagining. It also expands space for several other services currently offered such as rehabilitation services, behavioral health, a wellness center and more.   "This top-rate facility will allow us to offer a level of health care and increased access to services in northeastern Oklahoma that weren't even thought possible before," said Cherokee Nation Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis. "On behalf of the Cherokee Nation Health Services staff, I thank Chief Baker, the Tribal Council and Cherokee Nation Businesses for giving us the opportunity to deliver first-class health care to our patients." In 2013, the tribe pledged for the first time to use $100 million from Cherokee Nation Businesses' casino profits to improve the Cherokee Nation's health care infrastructure. The funds expanded the Stilwell and Sallisaw health centers, built new health centers in Ochelata and Jay, and will be used for the new outpatient facility at Hastings. The original W.W. Hastings building will serve as the tribe's in-patient hospital. "The Cherokee Nation has never been more prosperous in its history, and with that prosperity we have invested in services that are a top priority for our people," said Cherokee Nation Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd. "That effort is evident in this new, state-of-the-art health facility. Our government and business officials have been diligent in managing and growing our resources, and our citizens today and future generations will reap the benefits of the work done by those officials." Childers Architects and HKS Architects are designing the LEED-certified facility, with Flintco serving as the construction manager while teaming with Cooper Construction. About 350 construction jobs and more than 850 new health jobs over time will be created from the project. Photo Cutline: Photo Cutline: (L to R) Cherokee Nation Businesses Board Member Gary Cooper, CEO Shawn Slaton, Cherokee Nation Health Services Deputy Executive Director Charles Grim, Indian Health Service Deputy Director of Field Operations Rear Adm. Kevin Meeks, Tribal Councilors Keith Austin and Janees Taylor, Health Services Executive Director Connie Davis, Chickasaw Nation Lt. Governor Jefferson Keel, Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr., Treasurer Lacey Horn, Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden, Principal Chief Bill John Baker, Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd, Tribal Council Deputy Speaker Victoria Vazquez, Tribal council Secretary Frankie Hargis, Tribal Councilors Rex Jordan, David Walkingstick, and Bryan Warner, Cherokee Spiritual Leader Crosslin Smith, Tribal Councilors Dick Lay and Harley Buzzard, CNB Board Members Dan Carter and Jerry Holderby, CNB Executive Vice President Chuck Garrett, Little Cherokee Ambassador Emma Fields, Jr. Lauryn Skye McCoy, Little Cherokee Ambassador Reese Henson, Miss Cherokee Sky Wildcat, W.W. Hastings Hospital CEO Brian Hail, Dr. James Stallcup and Dr. Stephen Jones   Photo Cutline: Rendering of the entrance of the new 469,000-square-foot outpatient health center to be built on the W.W. Hastings campus in Tahlequah.   About Cherokee Nation The Cherokee Nation is the federally recognized government of the Cherokee people and has inherent sovereign status recognized by treaty and law. The seat of tribal government is the W.W. Keeler Complex near Tahlequah, Oklahoma, the capital of the Cherokee Nation. With more than 340,000 citizens, 11,000 employees and a variety of tribal enterprises ranging from aerospace and defense contracts to entertainment venues, Cherokee Nation is one of the largest employers in northeastern Oklahoma and the largest tribal nation in the United States. To learn more, please visit www.cherokee.org. Editor's note: Find all the latest Cherokee Nation news at www.anadisgoi.com. Photos accompanying this release are available at: http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42199 http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=42200


Hayes S.,National University of Ireland | McGuire B.,National University of Ireland | O'Neill M.,Health Services Executive | Oliver C.,University of Birmingham | Morrison T.,University of Saskatchewan
Journal of Intellectual Disability Research | Year: 2011

Background We investigated the relationship between low mood and challenging behaviour in people in the severe and profound range of intellectual disability, while controlling for the presence of potentially confounding variables such as diagnosis of autism, physical and sensory problems and ill health.Methods The key workers of 52 people with severe and profound intellectual disability completed measures of depression, communication, challenging behaviour and provided information on relevant demographic and health variables.Results Using the Mood, Interest and Pleasure Questionnaire for classification of mood, a significant difference was found between a 'low mood' and 'normothymic' group in the reported occurrence of challenging behaviour. This difference remained even when confounding variables such as the presence of autism, health and sensory difficulties were controlled. The frequency and severity of challenging behaviour was predicted by measures indicating the presence of low mood.Conclusion People with severe and profound show clear and measurable signs of low mood, and in this relatively small sample of institutionalised individuals, low mood was associated with challenging behaviour. © 2010 The Authors. Journal of Intellectual Disability Research © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


Clancy M.,Health Services Executive | McDaid B.,Health Services Executive | O'Neill D.,Trinity College Dublin | O'Brien J.G.,Trinity College Dublin | O'Brien J.G.,University of Louisville
Age and Ageing | Year: 2011

Background: There is little consistent data on patterns of reporting of elder abuse in Europe. Between 2002 and 2007, the Irish Health Service Executive developed dedicated structures and staff to support the prevention, detection and management of elder abuse without mandatory reporting. Public awareness campaigns, staff training and management briefings heightened awareness regarding this new service. Central to this process is the development of a national database which could provide useful insights for developing coordinated responses to elder abuse in Europe. Objective: To report the rate of referrals of elder abuse, patterns of elder abuse and outcomes of interventions related to a dedicated elder abuse service in the absence of mandatory reporting. Methods: Data on all referrals were recorded at baseline by a national network of Senior Case Workers dedicated to elder abuse, with follow-up conducted at 6 months and/or case closure. All cases were entered on a central database and tracked through the system. The study design was cross-sectional at two time points. Results: Of 1,889 referrals, 381 related to self-neglect. Of the remaining 1,508, 67% (n = 1,016) were women. In 40% (n = 603) of cases, there was more than one form of alleged abuse. Over 80% of cases referred related to people living at home. At review 86% (n = 1,300) cases were closed, in 101 client had died, 10% of these clients had declined an intervention. Cases are more likely to be open longer than 6 months if substantiated 36 versus 21% in the closed cases. Consultation with the police occurred in 12% (n = 170) of cases. The majority of clients (84% n = 1,237) had services offered with 74% (n = 1,085) availing of them. Monitoring, home support and counselling were the main interventions. Conclusion: The number of reported cases of abuse in Ireland indicates an under-reporting of elder abuse. The classification of almost half of the cases as inconclusive is a stimulus to further analysis and research, as well as for revision of classification and follow-up procedures. The provision of services to a wide range of referrals demonstrated a therapeutic added benefit of specialist elder abuse services. The national database on elder abuse referrals provides valuable insight into patterns of elder abuse and the nature of classification and response. The pooling of such data between European states would allow for helpful comparison in building research and services in elder abuse. © The Author 2011. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Geriatrics Society. All rights reserved.


Darker C.D.,Trinity College Dublin | Sweeney B.P.,Health Services Executive | El Hassan H.O.,Materials Misericordiae Hospital | Smyth B.P.,Health Services Executive | And 2 more authors.
Drug and Alcohol Review | Year: 2012

Introduction and Aims. An implementation study to test the feasibility and effectiveness of brief interventions (BIs) to reduce hazardous and harmful alcohol consumption in opiate-dependent methadone-maintained patients. Design and Methods. Before and after intervention comparison of Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT-C) scores from baseline to 3month follow up. Seven hundred and ten (82%) of the 863 eligible methadone-maintained patients within three urban addiction treatment clinics were screened. A World Health Organization protocol for a clinician-delivered single BI to reduce alcohol consumption was delivered. The full AUDIT questionnaire was used at baseline (T1) to measure alcohol consumption and related harms; and in part as a screening tool to exclude those who may be alcohol-dependent. AUDIT-C was used at 3month follow up (T2) to assess any changes in alcohol consumption. Results. One hundred and sixty (23% of overall sample screened) 'AUDIT-positive' cases were identified at baseline screening with a mean total full AUDIT score of 13.5 (SD 6.7). There was a statistically significant reduction in AUDIT-C scores from T1 ( , SD=2.35) to T2 (, SD=2.66) for the BI group (z=-3.98, P<0.01). There was a statistically significant decrease in the proportion of men who were AUDIT-positive from T1 to T2 (χ 2=8.25, P<0.003). Discussion and Conclusions. It is feasible for a range of clinicians to screen for problem alcohol use and deliver BI within community methadone clinics. Opiate-dependent patients significantly reduced their alcohol consumption as a result of receiving a BI. © 2011 Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs.


McGee H.,Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland | Garavan R.,Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland | Byrne J.,Health Services Executive | O'Higgins M.,Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland | Conroy R.M.,Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland
European Journal of Public Health | Year: 2011

Background: Sexual violence is a worldwide problem affecting children and adults. Knowledge of trends in prevalence is essential to inform the design and evaluation of preventive and intervention programmes. We aimed to assess the prevalence of lifetime sexual violence for both sexes and to document the prevalence of adult and child abuse by birth year in the general population. Methods: National cluster-randomized telephone interview study of 3120 adults in Ireland was done. Results: Child sexual abuse involving physical contact was reported by 20 of women and 16 of men. In adulthood, figures were 20 and 10 for women and men, respectively. Prevalence of any form of sexual violence across the lifespan was 42 (women) and 38 (men). Analysis by year of birth indicated a curvilinear pattern for child sexual abuse with lower prevalence in the oldest and youngest participants. Sexual violence in young adulthood showed a linear pattern with higher prevalence in the youngest participants. Conclusion: The trend of lower rates of experience of child sexual abuse in younger adults in the sample is in keeping with findings from other countries. The trend of higher rates of adult sexual violence in younger adults is worrying, particularly since the same participants reported less experience of child sexual abuse than the preceding generations. There is a paucity of international data addressing the issue of cohort differences in exposure to sexual violence. Within-study analysis, and follow-up studies designed to maximize replicability, are needed to inform discussion about societal trends in different types of sexual violence. © 2010 The Author. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Public Health Association. All rights reserved.

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