Providing Direct Services

Document Type

Book Chapter

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Health Professions


Providing direct services centers on health-related services that are delivered in person or face-to-face and involves providing basic screening tests and basic services as well as meeting basic needs. The two authorship teams included describe ways Community Health Representatives (CHRs), Community Health Aides (CHAs), and Primary Dental Health Aides (PDHAs) are engaged in providing direct services. The lack of access to oral health care is of particular concern in Alaska, where a large proportion of the population are Alaska Native and live in the state’s 200 remote villages that are reachable only by boat, snowmobile, or bush plane. The Alaska team presents the Alaska Dental Health Aide Program (DHA program) and describes the training, work, and impact of PDHAs, who provide dental education and preventive dentistry services to their community members. The CHR team provides information on the roles, scope of work, and impacts of CHRs that primarily work in Native American communities on reservations and near reservations lands. Their stories share insight and information on the distinctive work of the culturally immersed roles of CHRs in various Southwest Tribes and Pueblos as they work to provide high-quality, culturally appropriate, clinically guided health, wellness, and social services. The diversity of tribal communities and the unique approaches CHRs take in providing services are highlighted.

Publication Title

Promoting the Health of the Community

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