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Indian Health Service The Federal Health Program for American Indians and Alaska Natives

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In The Spotlight

May is Hepatitis Awareness Month!

Hepatitis, also known as inflammation of the liver, is most often caused by a virus. Hepatitis C is the most common type of viral hepatitis and a significant health problem in many tribal communities. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that everyone get tested for Hepatitis C, in particular men and women born between 1945 and 1965. It is important to know your status; there are vaccinations for some types of hepatitis and effective treatments for other types.

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Celebrate National Nurses Week!

National Nurses Week, May 6 to 12, allows us to honor the dedicated service of nurses throughout Indian Country. The 2015 theme "Ethical practice, Quality care" encourages us to recognize the ethical obligations in the nursing profession, as well as acknowledge the commitment, compassion, and care that nurses display in their practice. This is a wonderful time to thank the nurses in your life!

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ACA Special Enrollment Periods and Exemption Options

Although open enrollment for the Health Insurance Marketplace ended on February 15th, members of federally recognized tribes and Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) Corporation shareholders can enroll in Marketplace coverage any time of year. The health care law requires all people to have minimum essential coverage or pay a fee. American Indians, Alaska Natives, and people eligible for services through IHS, tribal programs, or urban Indian health programs can get an exemption to the fee by applying through the Marketplace or when filing their federal income tax return.

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President's Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Proposal

The President's Fiscal Year 2016 budget proposes $20.9 billion, a $1.5 billion (8%) increase over the 2015 enacted level, across a wide range of federal programs that serve Tribes including education, social services, justice, health, infrastructure, and stewardship of land, water, and other natural resources.

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All 13 IHS Obstetric Hospitals are Designated as Baby-Friendly!

The Indian Health Service (IHS) is pleased to announce that all 13 of its obstetric facilities have achieved the prestigious Baby-Friendly® Hospital designation. Baby-Friendly® hospitals offer new mothers the information, confidence, and skills they need to initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies. Breastfeeding initiation rates at most of these IHS facilities are consistently in the 90th percentile, and exclusive breastfeeding rates have continued to climb. Breastfed children have reduced rates of childhood obesity, diabetes, allergies, and asthma.

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