September 08 2011The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) recently hired family nurse practitioner Kristen Homer, RN, MSN, FNP-BC, to join the medical staff at the Mt. Edgecumbe High School Student Health Center. Homer comes to SEARHC from the U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Sitka Medical Clinic, where she worked the previous 6 1/2 years. Before that she was a public health nurse with the state’s Sitka Public Health Center and a community health aide/practitioner supervisor/field clinician for SEARHC. Homer also has worked with Planned Parenthood of Alaska. She first came to Sitka as a health-planning intern with the SEARHC in 1990. Before that, she worked in tribal health with the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa in Michigan. “We are very excited that Kristen has joined our staff here at the SEARHC Mt. Edgecumbe High School Student Health Center,” clinic manager Kari Lundgren, PA-C, said. “With all of her experience, she is a perfect addition to our health center team.” Homer holds a Master of Science in Nursing degree and certificate in nursing from the Yale University School of Nursing. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology and anthropology from Middlebury College. She is board certified as a family nurse practitioner by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. Homer enjoys pediatrics, adolescent and women’s health. She also enjoys reading, hiking, running and spending time with her family. “SEARHC brought me to Sitka in 1990 for a summer internship, and 21 years later I am still in Sitka and am excited about returning to SEARHC,” Homer said. “I look forward to working with the students and staff of Mt. Edgecumbe High School.” This is the fourth full school year that SEARHC has been contracted to supply student health care services to the state-run boarding high school. The agreement allows students better access to primary care and prevention services seven days a week. The school has about 430 students, and the vast majority of them are Alaska Natives from smaller villages around the state. SEARHC will be able to work with the tribal health organizations from each student’s home, so health care services can be transferred when students leave school. In addition to health care services provided by the student health center, students also are able to access health, dental and eye care from the nearby SEARHC S’áxt’ Hít Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital, behavioral health services from the Haa Toowóo Náakw Hít outpatient behavioral health clinic and health promotion services from the At Kaník Hít Community Health building.