The Santa Ynez Tribal Health Clinic

The Santa Ynez Tribal Health Clinic is located on the reservation of the Santa Ynez Band of Mission Indians, a federally recognized tribe. The reservation is located in central Santa Barbara County in the Santa Ynez Valley, separated from the coast by coastal mountains.


The Santa Ynez Tribal Health Clinic

The Santa Ynez Tribal Health Clinic is located in Santa Ynez, within Santa Barbara County, on the reservation of the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians; a federally recognized tribe.

The clinic was established in 1974 by Rosa Pace, an obstetric nurse and community member who was devoted to improving healthcare for our tribe. Initially, the 1974 clinic was a two-bedroom trailer with no running water and limited equipment and services that operated one day per week. With tribal and community involvement, as well as grants from Indian Health Services (IHS), the Clinic was able to obtain much-needed water and transition into a newer, larger trailer. In 2002 a new state-of-the-art facility was built on the upper reservation, expanding the clinic’s size and capacity and this building continues to be utilized today.

Although the Clinic is small, the services it provides are expansive: from general family practice, internal medicine, pediatrics, nutrition, and herbal medicine; to general dentistry; to individual, couples and family psychotherapy, psychiatry, and substance abuse treatment; to a broad range of community services and prevention programs. The Clinic is a stand-alone subsidiary whose mission is to specialize in the highest standard of quality health care through modern medicine and cultural traditions. The Clinic is a not-for-profit organization under the Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) guidelines and receives funding through various grants, including the Indian Health Services (IHS). The Clinic has also achieved Self-Governance Title V Compacting, which will allow it to self-manage its grant funding.

The Clinic carries out approximately 20,000 patient visits per year throughout medical, dental, and behavioral health services with an active patient population of over 4,600. While the clinic continues to focus on Native American health and wellness, they also treat non-Native patients of diverse ethnic backgrounds with unique needs. Although the majority of the tribal patients receives services at little or no cost, the clinic is always working to connect patients with financial resources and looking for ways to increase access to much-needed healthcare services throughout the community.

The Santa Ynez Tribal Health Clinic has achieved mature contractor status with the Indian Health Service and the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The Clinic is certified as an FQHC (Federally Qualified Health Center) look-a-like Medi-Cal/Medicare facility. We are one of few healthcare facilities in Santa Barbara County that has attained AAAHC accreditation. By maintaining this accreditation, it demonstrates that we are providing the highest quality of care and ensuring patient safety at all times. We offer comprehensive services to patients across the lifespan (newborn to elder) and serve the indigent, uninsured, and underinsured. All income levels are accepted including self-pay, private insurance, Medi-Cal and Medicare, and those eligible for sliding fee scale, based on income.

In addition, the Tribe owns and operates the Chumash Casino Resort and Spa in Santa Ynez and multiple other enterprises within the Santa Ynez Valley.

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