WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Indian Health Service (IHS) held a groundbreaking ceremony for the Mid-Atlantic Tribal Health Center in Charles City, VA – a 27,000 sq. ft. facility that will serve tribal members in the Mid-Atlantic Service Unit region.
“Increasing access to quality health care services is critical to improving the health of tribal members,” said IHS Nashville Area Director Dr. Beverly Cotton. “Our tribal partners have been involved throughout the process of planning the clinic, the services offered, and the cultural aspect of the design and decoration. We look forward to opening the new Mid-Atlantic Tribal Health Center and continuing to work with tribes in Virginia to expand on the services we provide.”
The health center is scheduled to open in the summer of 2024. The site will offer primary care and dental, behavioral health, diabetes, pharmacy and lab services. The total estimated cost of the facility is $18 million.
The Mid-Atlantic Service Unit serves seven mid-Atlantic tribes who share territory with the Commonwealth of Virginia – the Pamunkey Indian Tribe, the Chickahominy Indian Tribe, Chickahominy Indian Tribe Eastern Division, the Upper Mattaponi Indian Tribe, the Rappahannock Indian Tribe, the Monacan Indian Nation, and the Nansemond Indian Nation. The Pamunkey Tribe received federal recognition in 2015 while the other six tribes received recognition in 2018. The IHS Mid-Atlantic Service Unit started in 2020 soon after the tribes received recognition. IHS broke ground on the Monacan Health Center in October 2021, which is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2023 and will primarily serve members of the Monacan Indian Nation. The Mid-Atlantic Tribal Health Center will primarily support the other six tribes.
IHS also recently announced the addition of three mobile health units to serve patients in the Mid-Atlantic Service Unit service area, which will supplement the services provided by the Mid-Atlantic Tribal Health Center. The mobile units are providing various services, including vaccines, vital signs, COVID-19 screening, oral health, and mental health counseling and referrals. The units will be the primary source of services offered by the Mid-Atlantic Service Unit until the Mid-Atlantic Tribal Health Center and the Monacan Health Center are built.
The Mid-Atlantic Service Unit is part of the IHS Nashville Area, which covers 24 states in the eastern, southeastern and mid-United States.
The IHS, an agency in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, provides a comprehensive health service delivery system for approximately 2.7 million American Indians and Alaska Natives who belong to 574 federally recognized tribes in 37 states.