La Clínica del Pueblo de Río Arriba provides culturally sensitive, quality health services to all individuals in our service area regardless of their financial status.
Every individual in our service area will receive quality health services in a culturally sensitive manner.
Executive Assistant/HR Director
Risk Management Director/EMR Project Manager
Board Of Directors
Mary Louise Martinez
Jose Agapito Candelaria
La Cooperativa Clinic opened in 1969. In that year, a Chevy carry-all van was purchased and converted to an ambulance and the first sliding-fee scale in New Mexico was set up to assist people with obtaining health care. La Cooperativa Clinic provided first aid and assisted people as they waited for the ambulance.
The Dental Department opened the first of June 1969, with Vista dentist, Dr. James “Doc” Holliday, and with dental equipment donated from around the state. In 1970, the first La Cooperativa family counselling project was begun. This was the forerunner of today’s La Clinica Behavioral Health and Community Outreach Departments.
In 1992, the Board of Directors decided to seek Federal funding through the Bureau of Primary Health Care (330 funding). It was at this time La Cooperativa incorporated into La Clinica del Pueblo de Rio Arriba and became the organization as we know it today.
Also in 1992, the first Teen Wellness Center opened in New Mexico at Escalante High School and continues today to provide services on site to our students.
La Clinica has weathered many challenges through the years and with the help of everyone, it continues to move forward. La Clinica is as committed today, as in years past, to its goal of providing health care services to one and all.
Tierra Amarilla clinic has provided healthcare to rural residents since 1960s
Among a cluster of villages flanking the Rio Chama and the towering Brazos cliffs lies Tierra Amarilla. A mere two years after the village’s infamous Rio Arriba County Courthouse raid in 1967—a fight to reclaim land for Spanish colonial and Mexican- American heirs that helped ignite the Chicano movement —another cooperative movement here launched La Cooperativa.
Opposing plans to develop Tierra Amarilla into another resort, thereby displacing the agricultural residents, La Cooperativa initiated a series of community organizations that provided legal aid, cooperative farming and free or low-cost medical care to residents: La Clinica del Pueblo de Rio Arriba.
Regions’ first rural birthing center
The cooperative clinic’s funding was modest and grassroots, sustained by the sale of potatoes, corn and onions grown.
It opened the region’s first rural birthing center, and the co-op converted a van to an ambulance and began providing mobile health care to the valley’s people.
Rates were discounted and on a sliding scale (and still are), the first such medical provision in the state. Using donated equipment, dental care was added, following by mental health and counseling. A Teen Wellness Center opened in 1992.
La Clinica touts healthcare as a right, not a privilege. Today, the nonprofit clinic continues to provide medical, dental and behavioral health services, in addition to outreach programs.
Healthcare for the homebound
For many in this rural region, making a trek to a hospital takes an hour or two, and they may be debilitated or lacking transportation.
Thanks to donations garnered through the United Way of Northern New Mexico, the clinic purchased a new 40-foot mobile medical and dental “clinic” that provides care throughout the area. Clinic workers also often drive patients to and from their appointments.
Promotoras, such as Beronice Achuleta, who helped co-found La Clinica over 45 years ago, also deliver health and social services to their homebound neighbors for the clinic. (Promotoras are trusted neighbors, culturally connected to their patients. In addition to providing preventative care, they also help locate food for the hungry.) Their services greatly support the understaffed clinic that serves most of this region.
– Article courtesy of Los Alamos National Security, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy’s NNSA © Copyright 2014 LANS, LLC All rights reserved