Kodiak Area Native Association | Weekly News & Updates
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Weekly News & Updates

Dear KANA Supporter,

Quyanaasinaq for your support of our vision to create the best quality of care for all people on Kodiak Island. Guided by courtesy, respect, pride, caring, sharing, and our Native Sugpiaq Alutiiq values, KANA strives to elevate the quality of life for all we serve through the provision of excellent health and social services throughout the Koniag Region.

As an important partner in our community's health, we hope you find this information useful and relevant, and will share our progress and achievements with others in your community. Please reply to this email with any questions or comments; we appreciate your input and look forward to hearing from you.

This Week's News & Updates Include:


   -  ANMC Patient Housing Grand Opening
   -  IHS Announces Plans to Expand Use of Community Health Aides
   -  Kodiak Tobacco Support Group | 4-5 PM Thursdays @ MBHC
   -  Keep Your New Year's Resolution All Year Long

Alaska Native Medical Center Patient Housing Grand Opening

After years of planning and months of construction, the patient housing facility at the Alaska Native Medical Clinic (ANMC) opened on January 2 for guests. The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC) hosted a grand opening celebration to bless the facility and thank those who were instrumental in making the vision a reality.

The ANTHC Board of Directors shared this special celebration with our key partners including State of Alaska Department of Health and Social Services Commissioner Valerie Davidson, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Western Washington and Alaska, Rasmuson Foundation, IHS Alaska Director Chris Mandregan, Alaska Senate President Pete Kelly, Jeffrey Koonce of KPB Architects, Jerry Neeser of Neeser Construction and Myra Munson, Gary Bromwell and Marissa Flannery of Sonosky, Chambers, Sachse, Miller & Munson, LLP. This project would not have been possible without these partners. Donors and other information on the facility can be found at

The event was attended by many of our Tribal health partners and other well-wishers. Acclaimed Yup’ik musician Byron Nicholai opened the event by singing a few original songs and the Lepquimn Gumilgit Gagoadim Tsimshian Dancers followed with traditional song and dance.

KANA's President and CEO Andy Teuber also serves as the Chairman and President of ANTHC, and remarked on the critical role patient housing will make in removing barriers to care. Commissioner Davidson spoke to the personal benefits for our Alaska Native people, and Brian Jacobsen, Board Chair, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Western Washington and Alaska about the first Ronald McDonald House in Alaska, hosted on the top floor of our facility. ANTHC Vice Chair, Lincoln Bean, Sr. provided an invocation and blessing of the facility.

The family of the late Mike Zacharof, a longtime ANTHC board member who was integral to Patient Housing at ANMC becoming a reality for our people, was recognized and the facility was dedicated in Zacharof’s honor. Julie Zacharof, Mike Zacharof’s widow was welcomed to the stage by President Teuber for the presentation of a special plaque in his honor that will be displayed in patient housing.

After the ceremony, guests were treated to a buffet reception of traditional Alaska Native foods, which was prepared by NANA Management Services, the contractor that operates both the patient housing and ANMC Cafeteria Food Courts.
IHS Announces Plans to Expand Use of Community Health Aides
The Indian Health Service (IHS) announced its plans to begin a process to expand the use of community health aides at IHS-operated and Tribally managed facilities across the U.S. This announcement follows a Tribal consultation period announced in June 2016.

In the Alaska Tribal Health System, we have seen the success of the Community Health Aide Program (CHAP), Dental Health Aide Therapists, Behavioral Health Aides and their role in increasing access to quality care at our Tribally managed hospitals and clinics. According to the IHS report on the Tribal consultation, comments in favor of the CHAP expansion are also in favor of protecting existing programs and recognize the need for flexibility to meet the health needs of the Tribal areas we serve.

More information is available from a press release issued by IHS: Indian Health Service Plans to Expand Community Health Aide Program. The Alaska CHAP was also featured in a recent story from the Alaska Dispatch News: In rural Alaska, community health aides connect neighbors to medical care.
Kodiak Tobacco Support Group | 4-5 PM Thursdays @ Mill Bay Health Center
Whether this is your first time quitting tobacco, your tenth, or somewhere in between, don’t give up. It takes the average person seven tries to quit and stay quit, we know it's hard and that it takes the average person several attempts to quit. But don't give up on becoming tobacco free, we can help.

Having a plan and getting support can make it easier to quit tobacco. But you should know that quitting is different for everyone. If you're not sure what will work for you, we suggest trying a variety of different options until you find what works. KANA offers a Tobacco Support Group is for anyone who is interested in learning more about the impact of tobacco or resources available to help them quit, as well as various things that can help make their quit attempt more likely to succeed.

Not ready to commit, but still want some tips? Try these:
  • Drink lots of water. Make sure your fridge is always stocked and that you have water with you when you're on-the-go.
  • Have gum or mints handy for when cravings kick in.
  • Get your teeth cleaned and/or whitened.
  • Avoid caffeinated beverages like coffee and soda.
  • Enjoy healthy snacks like carrots and celery or fruits.
  • Keep your hands and mouth occupied with cinnamon sticks, toothpicks or straws.
  • Get your clothes and car cleaned inside and out to get rid of the smell of cigarettes.
  • Try to stay away from places where there will be smoking.
  • Become physically active, whether it's at a gym, with friends or on your won. Something as simple and easy as walking will help.
Kodiak Tobacco Support Group offers free education, counseling, and peer support to assist in overcoming tobacco dependence.

Join the Kodiak Tobacco Support Group at the Mill Bay Health Center, with facilitation by KANA's Chemical Dependency Counselor, Phil Jordinelli, and education provided by KANA’s Tobacco Prevention Specialist, Jason Opheim.  All who are interested in quitting tobacco are invited to join the group, which meets every Thursday from 4-5 p.m.
Keep Your New Year's Resolution All Year Long
New Year's resolutions are decisions we make in order to do, or not do something to keep us on track to achieve a personal goal or break a bad habit. The new year is the perfect time to look back at the past year and make an effort to improve ourselves as the new year begins. 

The number one new year's resolution in America is to lose weight. But how long does the average american keep their weight loss resolution?
2017 offers another opportunity to achieve your goals  for health and wellness, and KANA is here to help. Whether you're looking to lose weight, eat healthier, quit smoking or find a better job, we have the professionals and opportunities you need to keep your resolution going strong. 

Contact us to connect with a dietitian, for tobacco cessation referrals, to meet with a personal trainer, or jump start your career at
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3449 Rezanof Drive East Kodiak, AK 99615

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Kodiak Area Native Association · 3449 Rezanof Drive East · Kodiak, AK 99615 · USA

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