For Immediate Release
August 4, 2022
Contact: Laura Oates Butcher, (907) 227-0187
Alaska receives a $9.7 million Good Jobs Challenge Grant – to improve access to health care by adding new jobs and career paths for Alaskans
ANCHORAGE, Alaska – The Alaska Primary Care Association (APCA) has been selected as one of 32 national recipients of the U.S. Economic Development Administration Good Jobs Challenge grant. With over 500 applicants applying across the country, APCA was selected with an award of $9.7 million directed to Alaska.
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Good Jobs Challenge was created to meet the needs of both American workers and industry by breaking down historical barriers in the workforce training system.
“Alaska’s health care workers have dealt with enormous adversity the last few years, and this funding will be a great boost to our workforce and to Alaskans who depend on our having a strong, vital health care system,” said APCA CEO Nancy Merriman. “APCA is excited to collaborate with Alaska community health centers and other key partners to expand workforce development programs statewide.”
The grant funds will be used to increase the scope and reach of APCA’s statewide Apprenticeship program, support youth career development and outreach, and create pathways for Alaskans to improve their lives through meaningful employment in Alaska’s health centers and within the broader health care system.
APCA is teaming up with a number of notable organizations and partners to meet the challenge.
“Alaskans depend on having effective, quality health care when they need it most,” said Alaska Hospital & Healthcare Association (AHHA) CEO Jared Kosin. “This grant is a critical step forward in finding solutions for long-standing workforce challenges that will further efforts to rebuild and advance Alaska’s future healthcare workforce.”
APCA has been a leader in workforce development. The grant funds will allow for one of the biggest efforts to date to offer Alaskans free and low-cost health care training and career opportunities. The impact will be far reaching for all Alaskans.
“This funding is an amazing opportunity to train new health care workers all across Alaska and provide access to high-quality care for those who need it most,” said APCA Health Equity Director, Mari Selle. “Alaskans benefit when we can train and hire our neighbors to better deliver health services closer to home.”
Alaska Primary Care Association’s mission is to Advance Alaska’s Wellness. The organization supports the development and operations of Alaska’s 29 Health Centers and the workforces they rely on. Alaska Health Centers provide comprehensive medical, dental, and behavioral health care, and a range of support services to one in six Alaskans from over 200 sites throughout the state.