Absentee Shawnee Health Facility to Replace 'Little Bitty Clinic'

Absentee Shawnee Health Facility to Replace 'Little Bitty Clinic'


The Absentee Shawnee Tribe, along with the Indian Health Service, is building an expansive $26 million health clinic near Little Axe, Oklahoma to serve members of federally recognized tribes—and eventually perhaps non-tribal people, reported The Oklahoman. The 76,000-square-foot facility is scheduled to open in March 2012, and is financed in part by a Bureau of Indian Affairs-guaranteed loan.

“The need for this is tremendous,” Tim Tall Chief, the executive director of Absentee Shawnee health services, told The Oklahoman. Currently, tribal members seeks health care at a "little bitty clinic," Tall Chief said, or they drive to Shawnee.

Indian-owned architectural firm James R. Childers Architect, Inc., of Fort Smith, Arkansas is creating the building's sleek features: natural stone, brick and glass with landscaping that will incorporate native grasses and trees.

The clinic will include 24 medical examination rooms, 16 dental chairs, a physical therapy department, a behavioral science division, a diabetic wellness unit, optometrists, a full pharmacy and a fitness center.

A second phase of development could enlarge the facility to 98,000-square feet; a third phase would add an assisted living center and a senior center.

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