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Email - Celebrating 2 Years of the ACA

From: Kerrigan, Margo (IHS/CAL)
Sent: Sunday, April 08, 2012 3:55 PM
Subject: IHS Directors Blog: Celebrating 2 Years of the Affordable Care Act and the Indian Health Care Improvement Act

Celebrating 2 Years of the Affordable Care Act and Continued Progress on the Indian Health Care Improvement Act

Posted on the IHS Director"s Blog on April 6, 2012

Two weeks ago marked the 2-year anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act.  This is a great opportunity to remember that the health care law included the permanent reauthorization of the Indian Health Care Improvement Act, the law that authorizes Indian Health Service (IHS) programs and services.

IHS has worked with our partners across the federal government to implement several provisions that improve the services and resources for IHS, tribal, and urban Indian health programs.  Some examples include:

  • Over 50 Tribes have already applied to purchase federal health and life insurance for their employees through the same system as federal employees do. This means those employees will get access to better health insurance coverage and the Tribes will save money on employee insurance premiums.
  • The law makes sure that any third-party reimbursements that a local facility collects will remain at the facility to help them improve local staffing and services.
  • Health care professionals in tribal facilities are now allowed to work under a license from any State, which helps with recruitment efforts.
  • And the law also makes sure that if a patient is referred to an outside provider and their referral is authorized for payment by the Contract Health Services program, the outside provider cannot go after that patient for the billed charges.

The Affordable Care Act and the permanent reauthorization of the Indian Health Care Improvement Act both contain many more provisions that are important to the health of Indian Country. IHS continues to work in partnership with Tribes on implementation, and I am pleased to share with you an updated table summarizing these efforts (Link to IHS PDF 235KB).

 


Margo Kerrigan
Director
IHS California Area Office
(916) 930-3927 Ext. 306
(916) 837-2449 Cell

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