Community Engagement: A Key Component of Quality Health Care

Engaging customers is critically important in health care. SCF works to engage individuals and families through our relationship-based Nuka System of Care, with providers forming strong, long-term relationships with customer-owners. This can positively impact health outcomes; see this article for information about research done on the impact of relationship-based care. However, SCF’s engagement practices are not limited to individuals and families; SCF also works to engage the entire community in their health care, which is a key component of quality health care.


SCF is constantly listening to the community and collecting their feedback in order to improve the health care system to better meet their needs. In addition to using customer satisfaction surveys in our primary care clinics, SCF also employs many other methods for listening to customer-owners. SCF maintains various advisory committees, such as the Village Services Management Team, which serves as a liaison between SCF and Alaska Native representatives from the 55 rural villages SCF serves, and the Elder Council, which advises SCF on the Elder Program and other areas that impact Elder health.

Community Events

SCF also hosts the Annual Gathering, a free event that community members can attend to learn more about services available at SCF and enjoy live entertainment, with activities for children and Alaska Native art available for purchase. SCF also maintains close relationships with organizations in the community such as the Alaska Federation of Natives and the Alaska Native Health Board.

Health Education

Another method of community engagement SCF uses is our Health Education department. Health Education works with other SCF departments, as well as outside organizations, to provide events and services for customer-owners such as group classes, gatherings, workshops, special events, health fairs, individualized counseling, cooking classes and educational demonstrations. Health Education also operates a Wellness Center in Anchorage with exercise equipment for customer-owners to use.

SCF is committed to engaging customer-owners on an individual, family, and community level, and walk beside them on their journey toward wellness.