Indian Health Service (IHS)
The Indian Health Service is an operational division agency within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHA), which is responsible for providing medical and health care services for federally recognized Indian and Alaskan Native American tribes within the United States ranging from community health to primary health care services. The Indian Health Service provides health care and medically needed services to American Indians in health care organizations and medical facilities, which include substance abuse centers, mental health care facilities, hospitals, clinics, and other federally funded health care organizations. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, nd). History of Indian Health Services
The government negotiated treaties with the Native American Indians organizing settlements, legislations, and agreements to trade Indian land and resources for government promises of needed health care. According to Kuchell-Haworth (2008), “The principal legislation authorizing federal funds for health services to Native American tribes is the Snyder Act of 1921. In ratifying the Snyder Act, the federal government intended to provide appropriations "for the benefit, care and assistance, and for the relief of distress and the conservation of health for Indians tribes throughout the United States." Following the Snyder Act, Congress created a process for transferring BIA and IHS health programs to tribal governments through the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act of 1975. In doing so, Congress noted the past inadequacies of Native American health care, and reaffirmed its intention to involve tribes in health care programs through tribal self-governance”. In 1976 congress enacted the ICHIA to provide the American Indians with the best health care possible. The main reason in forming the Indian Health Service was to decrease the use of Indian medicine healers. Early Indian heritage and practice promoted the...
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