Published On: Fri, Sep 27th, 2013

New Orientation Package developed at Cherokee Indian Hospital

The Cherokee Indian Hospital Authority is currently developing employee orientation materials and exercises designed to promote optimal rapport and understanding between members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee’s customer community and Cherokee Indian Hospital staff.  Based on a program from The Southcentral Foundation and the Alaska Native Medical Center called NUKA, “if you understand me and my people then you help us into the land of healing”.

Sarah Sneed (left) looks over old photos of Cherokee Indian Hospital employees with Lucretia Dawkins and Richard French.  (CIH photo)

Sarah Sneed (left) looks over old photos of Cherokee Indian Hospital employees with Lucretia Dawkins and Richard French. (CIH photo)

Sarah Margaret Sneed, an EBCI tribal member from the Birdtown Community and a graduate of Harvard Law School, is developing the historical perspective for the hospital, researching and aligning events, and relevant dates.

Orientation materials cover the history of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Indian Self-Determination and current federal Indian health care policy and the emergence of the Cherokee Indian Hospital as a wholly-owned entity of the Tribe.

This essential training is also intended to apprise Hospital personnel of the developmental evolution of the Cherokee Indian Hospital from early federal provision of health care to the Eastern Band, starting with the placement of a nurse at the Cherokee Boarding School through the adoption of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in 2010.

Sneed’s work is one element in the development of a comprehensive human resources approach to making the hospital customer-friendly. The new orientation will be more of a “learning experience” than an exercise.  Emphasis will be on strengthening relationships, improving workflow and the delivery of customer centered care. This will be implemented through a phased, measured, and team based approach and will be mandatory for all staff.

The new orientation package implementation is projected for January 2014.

– Cherokee Indian Hospital 

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