Tahlequah Daily Press

Local News

March 28, 2014

Cherokee Nation Health expansion takes over old building

TAHLEQUAH — As the Cherokee Nation continues its multimillion-dollar health facility expansion, new life is being breathed into an old building in downtown Tahlequah.

The tribe has owned the building on the northeast corner of Water and Choctaw, formerly Homeland/Safeway, for a number of years, and it was previously home to Cherokee Nation Industries. By the end of the summer, renovations will be complete, and about 60 Cherokee Nation Health Services employees will call it home.

“The building includes 25,000 square feet of space,” said Connie Davis, executive director of CN Health Services. “Once the renovations are complete, half of the building will be used for medical records storage, scanning and the compliance officers, or about 20 employees. They have 9,000 square feet of space right now, and when they move in here, they’ll have about 12,000 feet. When you take into consideration the records for a million patient visits per year, that’s a lot of information.”

According to Davis, given the amount of space the tribe currently leases for health services, renovating a building the tribe owns just makes good business sense.

“The chief has been working for over a year to move us out of rented space,” said Davis. “He’s been working with architects for well over six months on planning for the space, weighing our current needs with our future needs, and figuring out the best use of the facility for the least expense.”

In addition to medical records and compliance, the building also has offices for the Health Services Information Technology Department.

“They’re in 7,000 square feet of space now, and they’ll have 10,000 to 11,000 feet here,” said Davis. “The building will be set up with the appropriate security, ventilation and firewalls. While some of the Health IT department will remain on-site at Hastings, the majority of them will be moving here.”

All total, the building will house about 60 employees, but the facility also includes two vast rooms for conferences and training.

“We plan on doing lots of training here,” said Davis. “Just having a space large enough to accommodate training classes has been a challenge. One conference room has 12,000 square feet of space and will have a full kitchen. We’re also adding a number of restrooms and bringing everything up to Americans with Disabilities Act compliance.”

Additional parking will be added to the north side of the building.

“As you can imagine, with 60 employees, the front lot will fill very quickly,” said Davis. “We’re adding an additional parking lot in the back for overflow when we have training sessions and meetings.”

Davis said the tribe plans to fully implement its electronic health records system within a year.

“This building will give us the space to conduct all the training with the vendor right here, instead of having to send our people elsewhere,” said Davis. “Plus, we like that the building is centrally located here in the middle of town, and think it will be a boost to the downtown economy.”

Davis said health services staff have been included throughout the planning stages.

“They’ve been involved in the layout, and have had input on the working conditions,” said Davis. “We’re very excited about the move, and hope to have the building finished this summer.”


Text Only
Local News
  • rf-poker-run-main.jpg Poker run

    Fundraiser was in the cards for local philanthropic group

    It was perfect weather, with temperatures in the high 80s Saturday, as boaters filled their vessels with friends for a fun afternoon on Lake Tenkiller. A crowd gathered at Cookson Bend Marina, and folks lined up to support a local charity event.
    As fundraisers go, the Beta Sigma Phi Mu Omega Poker Run last Saturday could be considered huge success, as nearly $9,000 was collected.

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • bilbrey-anthony.jpg Man arrested for blackmailing woman for sex

    Cherokee County sheriff’s deputies put a man behind bars Monday night after he allegedly tried to blackmail a woman by threatening to post nude photos of her on the Internet if she did not meet him for sex.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Peach_photo_2.jpg Peach crop lean, but fruit still available

    Summer is all about peaches in Porter – especially at Livesay Orchard.
    The Livesay Orchard is still busy a week after Porter’s annual peach festival. The orchard’s crop this year was cut in half from what had previously been expected, according to Kent Livesay, one of the owners of the orchard.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • jackson-jaymee.jpg Tot’s injuries prompt abuse charges for two local residents

    A Tahlequah couple was formally charged Tuesday with child neglect and child abuse after an 18-month-old girl was found with a number of injuries.

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • proctor-micah.jpg Pair accused of threatening man

    Two men behind bars at the Cherokee County Detention Center are accused of wielding a knife and gun and assaulting a man at a trailer park on West Keetoowah Sunday afternoon.
    Tahlequah Officer Reed Felts spoke with Reinaldo Flores, who told officers he heard a knock on his door and went to answer it.

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • Reach Higher an innovative approach to college

    The “Reach Higher” degree completion program is helping many Oklahoma students go back to school without drastically changing their lives.
    “This program is designed for working adults,” said Tim McElroy, program coordinator at the NSU- Muskogee campus.

    July 30, 2014

  • City attorney, others questioned chamber use of tourism tax

    Letters written in 2006 by City Attorney Park Medearis to former city councilor and Tahlequah Area Tourism Council board member Jack Spears suggest money from a hotel-motel tax could be disbursed through an agent other than the Chamber of Commerce, without voter approval.

    July 30, 2014

  • Hulbert council discusses Internet service

    During a meeting Tuesday night, members of the Hulbert Town Council discussed the possibility of Lake Region Electric Cooperative’s extending its cable and Internet service.

    July 30, 2014

  • ts-marching-MAIN.jpg Marching in step

    Tahlequah High School Orange Express Marching Band kicks off 2014 season with summer drills.

    The Tahlequah High School Orange Express Marching Band has added 30-35 freshmen to its roster this year, and drills began for the newest members last Thursday.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • studie-roberta.jpg Woman accused of stealing cash, taking it to casino

    A 35-year-old Tahlequah woman is free on bond after she allegedly took $1,200 from a man who had been jailed for old warrants.
    Cherokee County sheriff’s deputies said they spoke with Jason Jones last week after Jones was arrested by park rangers for the outstanding warrants. Jones said he came to Oklahoma to see family, and when he was arrested, he left his wallet and cash with one of his daughters.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo


Do you believe school administrators and college presidents in Oklahoma are paid too much?

Strongly agree.
Somewhat agree.
Somewhat disagree.
Strongly disagree.
     View Results
Tahlequah Daily Press Twitter
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Amphibious Landing Practice in Hawaii Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA