The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium Mt. Edgecumbe High School Student Health Center was awarded a $233,000 grant on Dec. 8 from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as part of the Affordable Care Act.
The grant was one of 45 grants worth $14 million awarded to school-based health centers around the country so they can expand their capacities and modernize their facilities. The Mt. Edgecumbe High School Student Health Center was the only Alaska facility to receive one of the grants. Mt. Edgecumbe High School is a statewide boarding school based in Sitka, operated by the Alaska Department of Education & Early Development. SEARHC has been operating the MEHS Student Health Center in partnership with the state since 2007.
The grant will renovate and improve the MEHS Student Health Center clinic space, which is 1,000 square feet of old dormitory space. The money will be used to make the space more compliant to the American Disability Act and HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, the federal health privacy law), while other renovations to improve cleanliness, safety and clinic office flow. The money also will be used to upgrade the sick bay rooms. Half of the project will feature major renovations and the other half will be minor fixes.
The MEHS Student Health Center serves 407 students from 105 Alaska communities.