Under each sign in the Salish Integrative Oncology Care Center, there is a translation in Puyallup. It is also the only cancer center owned by a native tribe in the entire country.
From the native approach, health is more than just healing of body - its mind, body and spirit.
The Salish Integrative Oncology Cancer Center was established because previously the tribe’s cancer care was fragmented, as patients were forced to travel to several different clinics for care. Not only did this hurt physical care, but also spiritual well-being.
The clinic is filled with exam rooms and traditional artwork.
The new clinic aims to combine native healing with modern treatments.
Patients will receive chemotherapy and naturopathic treatment. Patients will also have the choice of ancient ritual healing ceremonies.
According to the tribe leader, Bill Sterud, a ritual helps a person feel balance and connected to the great Spirit. It can be very profound.
The clinic will be staffed by board-certified medical oncologists and naturopathic oncologists in addition to natural cancer care and complimentary cancer care practitioners.
The clinic will build on the foundation of “Integrative Medicine” to build upon traditional oncology with whole person integrative medicine, including naturopathy, acupuncture and Native American treatments.
The hope is that this holistic approach to cancer will be a successful one the clinic plans to welcome patient regardless of their ability to pay.
The objective of the clinic is not to make money, but to save lives and that is what the doctors at the clinic plan on doing.