Community Health Center Nears Completion


Erik Wander/KMXT

Construction work is just about complete on the Kodiak Community Health Center addition on the grounds of Providence Kodiak Island Medical Center. KCHC is expected to begin moving into the new facility within the week and have it fully operational just in time for National Community Health Center Week in August.

KMXT’s Erik Wander has more.

After about a year of construction, workers from Brechen Enterprises are putting the finishing touches on the Kodiak Community Health Center addition and parking lot this week. KCHC executive director Brenda Friend anticipates receiving a certificate of occupancy within a week and beginning the process of moving after that. She said that process will be conducted in stages.

(Friend 1 40 sec. "We’re spread out all over … more privacy, confidentiality.")

With all of the health center’s operations consolidated under one roof and the expanded space it will provide, including an increase from four exam rooms to nine, Friend said KCHC will offer better productivity, customer service and care for the un-insured and under-insured patients it serves.

(Friend 2 45 sec. "A lot of our delays with … need to see your doctor today.")

The center currently has just two full-time and one part-time physician. Along with the additional space, additional staff and expanded hours will come additional medical services and advantages for patients.

(Friend 3 23 sec. "I have a couple of full-time … have insurance or not.")

Friend said she expects the entire moving-in process to take a couple of months. She said she has set the first week of August, which is National Community Health Center Week, as her goal of being fully operational. She believes Kodiak is lucky to have a community health center and said support from the community is critical.

(Friend 4 45 sec. "We’re very fortunate … into the 20th century in Kodiak.")

Friend said the roughly 6-million dollar project was funded by a combination of grants and private sources. KCHC, which offers primary and preventive health services, is open seven days a week, including four evenings a week after moving into the new facility. KCHC sees between 5-thousand and 7-thousand patients per year. Construction on the new facility began in May of 2008.

I’m Erik Wander.


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