Seneca Nation Announces Confirmed Case of COVID-19 

The Seneca Nation announced that a non-Seneca employee of the Seneca Nation Health System has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. The individual is a resident of Erie County who had limited patient contact at the Health System and last reported to work on Thursday, March 12. The employee showed no symptoms at that time, but began to feel ill later that evening. The individual has not returned to Seneca territory since that time. No other workers at the Health System have shown any symptoms to date. “Last night, we were notified that an employee of our Health System has been diagnosed with a confirmed case of COVID-19,” said Seneca Nation President Rickey Armstrong, Sr. “That individual showed excellent judgment in remaining away from the Health System and away from Seneca territory upon feeling ill, and our thoughts are with them. We will work cooperatively with Erie County health officials to provide any information we can, in order to assist all necessary response and notification measures.” As of today, the Nation has closed the Allegany Health Center, the Cattaraugus Health Center, and the Cattaraugus Wellness Center, and will conduct deep cleaning procedures at each facility. Workers entering the buildings will continue to be temperature screened, as all visitors have been for the past several days. The Nation will seek guidance of health officials pertaining to the re-opening of the Health System facilities. Individuals in need of services should call their primary care provider. In keeping with the Nation’s Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan, which the Nation has implemented over the past several days, President Armstrong has officially issued a State of Emergency on Seneca Nation Territories. The order will allow the Nation to access additional federal funding sources to aid in its response efforts. “Protecting the health and welfare of our people, especially our elders and our vulnerable populations, remains our highest priority,” President Armstrong said. “A task force of professionals from across Seneca Nation government continues working tirelessly to implement wide-ranging prevention and response efforts on our territories. Together, we will continue to aggressively monitor the situation on our territories and within our surrounding communities to take every responsible precaution to safeguard the Seneca people.” In addition to the measures announced today, President Armstrong has previously instituted travel restrictions for all Nation officials and employees, issued work-from-home and stand-by leave orders for Nation employees, adjusted the delivery of many on-territory services, canceled public activities, closed Nation facilities, and restricted outside visitation to the Nation’s territories. “I have said before that this unprecedented situation requires an unprecedented response, and that’s what we are seeing,” President Armstrong added. “The Seneca people can rest assured that every thoughtful decision is being made with our community in mind. We will get through this together.”

IMPORTANT MESSAGE from the Seneca Nation Health System regarding operations in response to COVID-19.

To begin- we would like to thank all Health System patients and staff for their cooperation and flexibility as we navigate challenges in Health System operations.

Since early March many of us have been continuously preparing, planning, and adjusting our response to COVID-19. As we have encountered our first confirmed case in the area, we have made an unprecedented decision to close the Health System on Thursday 3/19 and Friday 3/20 in order to perform a deep clean of all of our facilities, as well as to make sure our staff is prepared for the upcoming weeks.

We will make every effort to keep you updated as we develop a plan to move forward. To all of our dedicated staff: your continued devotion to the Seneca community is appreciated, thank you for all you do.


SNHS Administration

Update from Seneca Nation Veterans Department

Effective Tuesday March 17, Seneca Nation Veterans Department is closed for in person assistance. Veterans should contact the Tribal Advocate if they are in need of food supplies. Tribal Advocate will take applications over the phone.

Veteran related services, such as; claims – records- general information, can be communicated via phone. Please continue to call x5536 if you have any questions or concerns.

Seneca Nation Veterans Department asks that veterans take note of this page on the US Dept of Veterans Affairs website for important information regarding COVID-19 and VA services. There are currently, at the time of this posting, no cases at the Buffalo VA Medical Center.

Apply for and manage the VA benefits and services you’ve earned as a Veteran, Servicemember, or family member—like health care, disability, education, and more.


VA.gov | Veterans Affairs

Apply for and manage the VA benefits and services you’ve earned as a Veteran, Servicemember, or family member—like health care, disability, education, and more.

Additional Information:

  • Any and all checks issued by the Seneca Nation can be cashed at any Keybank.
  • Seneca Nation Prescriptions can be filled at any Rite-Aid Pharmacy.

Entrance Procedures for SAAB and William Seneca Building

See memo from the President’s Office:

Executive Order: State of Emergency

The Seneca Nation declares STATE OF EMERGENCY for Seneca Nation Territories. See Executive order below: