Bill John Baker: Health care is top priority for Cherokee Nation

Chief Bill John Baker, left, and deputy chief Joe Crittenden. Photo from Facebook

Principal Chief Bill John Baker will focus in improving health care services during his second term as leader of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma:
The election is over and we can now focus our attention on what truly matters, the Cherokee people. We can continue the progress we’ve made the last four years for the Cherokee Nation. We have multiple projects in motion that will be game changing endeavors for our future. Over the next four years, we will continue to focus on building a brighter future for all Cherokees.

The most important issue for our future, bar none, is access to quality health care. Four years ago, people agreed our tribal health care was at a crisis point so we invested $100 million dollars from casino profits into health care expansion and improvements. Our record-breaking gaming profits should be utilized to benefit Cherokee citizens. That is the reason we pursued gaming in the first place 25 years ago.

We’ve built new clinics in Jay and Ochelata, expanded health centers in Stilwell and Sallisaw, and will soon break ground on a 450,000 square foot facility at the W.W. Hastings health campus in Tahlequah. That new space will provide space for 1,200 new employees that will in turn, provide quality care for our people.

Once the facility is built, we can launch our own medical school, where we will partner with Oklahoma State University to provide hands-on education at our own facility. Growing our own health care providers is critical for our future wellness. We will be able to educate and train health care professionals that will one day staff our clinics and new hospital.

Get the Story:
Bill John Baker: Another term to keep expanding opportunities for Cherokee people (The Grand Lake News 7/13)

Related Stories
Cherokee Nation certifies results of election for top positions (07/01)
Bill John Baker wins re-election as leader of Cherokee Nation (6/29)
Cherokee Nation chief faces at least four challengers in election (02/27)

Join the Conversation