HHS Strategic Plan, Fiscal Years 2007–2012 (Strategic Plan). American Indians and Alaska Natives

11/22/2015

Health services are provided to American Indians and Alaska Natives through several means. In FY 2006, IHS provided health care services directly at 33 hospitals, 59 health centers, and 50 health stations and supports essential sanitation facilities (including water supply, sewage, and solid waste disposal) for American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) homes and communities. IHS professional staff include approximately 2,700 nurses, 900 physicians, 400 engineers, 500 pharmacists, 300 dentists, and 150 sanitarians. IHS also employs various allied health professionals, such as nutritionists, health administrators, and medical records administrators. More than half of the IHS budget is now used to provide funding for American Indian Tribes, tribal organizations, and Alaska Native corporations that choose to contract or compact with IHS to provide health care under the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act of 1975 (Public Law 93-638), as amended. These entities administer 15 hospitals, 221 health centers, 9 residential treatment centers, 97 health stations, and 176 Alaska village clinics. Both IHS and tribal entities purchase additional health care services from private providers.x

HHS and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding to encourage cooperation and resource sharing between IHS and the Veterans Health Administration. The goal is to use the expertise of both organizations to deliver quality health care services and enhance the health status of AI/AN veterans. An interagency advisory committee, involving IHS and the Office of Minority Health (OMH) in OPHS, identifies health disparities for American Indians and Alaska Natives compared to the general U.S. population.

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