Years in the making, the time has come for the Northern Arizona Area Health Education Center to develop a family medicine residency program in northern Arizona. The need has never been higher, the solution never clearer and the opportunity never better to develop the only Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) physician residency program in Arizona with a community health center as the sponsoring institution. Unique not only in its teaching model but also its location, it is one of the only ACGME residency programs north of Phoenix and the only program owned by a regional AHEC center.
About North Country HealthCare
North Country HealthCare is the primary community health center in its region. In 1991, a small group of doctors and nurses, health and human service representatives and consumers worked together to establish the Flagstaff Community Free Clinic. In 1996, the clinic transitioned from a volunteer organization into a state and federally funded community health center. Today, North Country HealthCare serves 14 communities and over 50,000 patients across northern Arizona, providing quality medical care to all.
North Country HealthCare’s mission is to provide accessible, affordable, comprehensive, quality primary healthcare in an atmosphere of respect, dignity, and cultural sensitivity. The health and well-being of patients and community alike are promoted through direct services, training/education, outreach and advocacy.
North Country HealthCare provides a wide range of patient and family-focused health services, including specialized medical care for those who need more extensive care. North Country Healthcare has a very active obstetrics program; our providers deliver more than 50% of newborns in Flagstaff annually. Behavioral medicine is integrated with primary care in the majority of our clinic sites.
The services offered by North Country HealthCare are:
- Primary Care & Family Medicine
- Behavioral Health
- Dental Care
- Physical Therapy
- Community Outreach Programs
*Services vary by location.
About the Northern Arizona Area Health Education Center (NAHEC)
North Country HealthCare strives to improve the education, training and distribution of healthcare professionals in a variety of disciplines in Arizona. North Country HealthCare is the site of the Northern Arizona Area Health Education Center (NAHEC)
NAHEC addresses the shortage and maldistribution of healthcare professionals by:
- Providing community-based clinical training experiences for health professions students and residents
- Educating the current and future rural primary care workforce
- Recruiting students from minority and disadvantaged backgrounds into health careers
- Facilitating healthcare research and informatics that translates to underserved communities
- Connecting communities to better care through telemedicine, interprofessional, and population health initiatives
- Delivering evidence-based health promotion programs to communities in need
Established in 1987, NAHEC is part of the national and state AHEC system and serves Apache, Coconino, Navajo, and a portion of Yavapai Counties.
Mission and Goals of the Residency Program
The family medicine residency program seeks to extend the mission of North Country HealthCare in providing accessible, comprehensive, quality affordable care in a primary healthcare setting across northern Arizona. Our goals are to prepare a group of family physicians for autonomous practice in rural and frontier northern Arizona, and to prepare culturally competent physicians for the region. North Country has affiliations with A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona, The University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix, and The University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson.
Northern Arizona Service Region
North Country HealthCare’s service region consists of Apache County, Coconino County, Gila County, Mohave County, Navajo County, and the northern part of Yavapai County, occupying some 53,300 square miles across the northern third of Arizona. This land includes the largest ponderosa pine forest in the world, the stunning beauty of the Grand Canyon, the Great Basin Desert in the north and east, and the Mojave Desert in the west. The regional population is over 500,000, with a racial/ethnic breakdown of 54% Non-Hispanic White, 26% American Indian, 12% Hispanic, 6% African-American, and 2% Asian. With a population of 70,000 people, Flagstaff is the area’s largest city.
In the northeast corner of the state, the Navajo Nation occupies 27,000 square miles of the service region, about the size of West Virginia. Other major American Indian reservations in the service region are the Hopi Reservation and the Fort Apache Reservation for the White Mountain Apache Tribe.