Maniilaq Association provides health, tribal and social services to residents of Northwest Alaska. A non-profit corporation, Maniilaq Association represents twelve federally recognized tribes located in Northwest Alaska. Maniilaq manages health, tribal and social services for about 8,000 people within the Northwest Arctic Borough and the village of Point Hope. With approximately 550 in its workforce, Maniilaq Association is also the largest employer.


In 1966, the Northwest Alaska Native Association (NANA) was founded to help settle the Native’s land claims issues. This non-profit organization soon became an advocate for all Native issues, including health, housing, and political rights. With the passing of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) in 1971, a for-profit Native corporation was established and named the NANA Regional Corporation. To avoid confusion, the non-profit Northwest Alaska Native Association was renamed the Mauneluk Association, later changed to the more traditional name, Maniilaq.

The Kotzebue Area Health Corporation (KAHC) was formed in 1973. This corporation was established to care for the health needs, and it soon became apparent that Maniilaq and KAHC were performing similar functions. In 1975, the two organizations merged.

Maniilaq began the construction of a new health facility in 1980 in order to house and consolidate its rapidly expanding public service programs. By the time it was completed in 1981, the Association had grown from a handful of programs and staff to a multi-million dollar organization.

Maniilaq assumed management of the Indian Health Service (IHS) hospital programs and services and renamed it the Maniilaq Medical Center. Today Maniilaq Association manages the 80,000 square foot, $42 million hospital as well as the clinics in all the villages. The organization also added to the facility a Long Term Care wing to offer nursing home services to the elders.


The purpose of Maniilaq Association is to provide health care, social services, and tribal self-governance support to the following twelve (12) villages situated in the Northwest region of Alaska: Ambler, Buckland, Deering, Kiana, Kivalina, Kobuk, Kotzebue, Noatak, Noorvik, Point Hope, Selawik, and Shungnak (collectively referred to as the “Maniilaq Service Area”), under authorization by the governing bodies of the federally-recognized tribes for those villages.


Ikayuutiluta Avatmun inuunayhliqput aasiin nakuutlukumuuq. “Working together to make our lives better.” The mission of Maniilaq Association is to promote the economic, social, educational, cultural, spiritual, and personal well-being of the people of the Maniilaq Service Area.


Maniilaq Association (“Maniilaq”) is seen as the premier model for creating successful, healthy communities through the planning, development and strengthening of village-based services supported by strong, accountable tribal self-governance.