Our History

A Community Built & Managed Non-Profit 501c3

MWC History

In the 1970s upper McKenzie Valley residents formed a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, McKenzie River Clinic, to start a local health clinic for the community. The Clinic was funded initially as a pilot project for a new federal initiative to establish Rural Health Clinics in areas lacking primary health care. The Clinic opened its doors for business in March, 1977, and was the first Rural Health Clinic in Oregon.

The McKenzie River Clinic has operated continuously since 1977, providing primary health care to the McKenzie Valley community. It is located in Blue River, Oregon, on Highway 126 and is the only primary health care facility between Springfield and Sisters.

In 2019, the Board of Directors transferred the medical practice of McKenzie River Clinic to Orchid Health, a small company that is laser-focused on providing excellent rural health care in Oregon. Our 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization changed its name to McKenzie Valley Wellness so that Orchid could keep the Clinic’s name. We kept ownership of the building and leased it to Orchid Health.

On September 7, 2020, the catastrophic Holiday Farm Fire burned the clinic building along with hundreds of homes and businesses in the McKenzie Valley. Our nonprofit organization still owns the lot in Blue River, across the street from the post office. We will build the new clinic there.

McKenzie Valley Wellness is a nonprofit corporation organized under the laws of Oregon, based in the McKenzie Valley. A Board of Directors oversees the activities, financial affairs, rebuild of a new clinic, and eventually development of wellness programs to benefit the community.