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Dr. Desiree Fox becomes behavioral health division director

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News from CSKT Tribal Health

ST. IGNATIUS — Tribal Health is pleased to announce that Salish Tribal Member, Dr. Desiree Fox, is now the Behavioral Health Division Director.

In addition to leading the Behavioral Health division at Tribal Health, Dr. Fox is also maintaining her position as Supervisory Clinical Psychologist.

“It is an exciting time to be home, working with my Tribe, and to help lead the Behavioral Health division amongst my colleagues and peers. I am grateful for the commitment by our Tribes to create critical mental health, addiction and preventative health resources for our community. We are now fully staffed at Behavioral Health, and we are providing important services that can truly improve the lives of our families and friends.”

Dr. Fox began working at Tribal Health in December 2020. Her prior experience includes completing practicum hours within the CSKT community working with adolescents and adults during her graduate work. Dr. Fox also worked with the Tribal Defender Office for several years where she helped provide assessment and treatment services in addition to providing integrated care and therapy services for Tribal Health. Additionally, Dr. Fox provided integrated care services for Partnership Health Center in Missoula. During her internship and fellowship training years with the Veterans Administration (VA), Dr. Fox completed rotations and specialized experiences in the VA’s primary care behavioral health, pain clinic, and telehealth.

As the Behavioral Health Division Director and Supervisory Clinical Psychologist for Tribal Health, Dr. Fox’s duties include leadership of the Behavioral Health division, while also continuing to see patients to provide psychological assessment and diagnosis, functional assessments, individual psychological treatment, and psychoeducational and therapy groups.

Joe Durglo, Acting Department Head for Tribal Health says that Dr. Fox’s expertise providing integrated care services and interdisciplinary consultation with a focus on health and wellness is helping Tribal Health expand an integrated care model of patient care.

“Tribal Health has been moving toward a more integrated model of care, which is a natural and logical model for delivery of our services. We are enriched by Tribal members who come home to offer their gifts back to their community, and it is great to have a Tribal member leading another division at Tribal Health.”

Dr. Fox received undergraduate and graduate (masters and doctorate) degrees from the University of Montana Missoula. She completed a pre-doctoral internship and post-doctoral fellowship training at the Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System - American Lake Division in Tacoma, WA.

“I chose a career in health to learn new skills to contribute to my community’s overall health and wellness,” said Dr. Fox. “I am excited to be home and to be a part of Tribal Health to integrate my skills and knowledge with those that already exist in the tribal community. My approach is to provide quality, culturally informed services to Indigenous individuals while recognizing and building upon the strengths that already reside in our people and community.

Dr. Fox says she also does some work to help increase visibility and culturally relevant services to marginalized populations, including Indigenous and criminal-justice involved individuals. In her free time, her favorite place is Flathead Lake, enjoying time with extended family, especially her husband and two children who are now five and seven.

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