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Posted on Apr 24, 2014

Special Diabetes Program for Indians

The Special Diabetes Program for Indians was extended by Congress for another year through September 30, 2015! The President signed the legislation that included the extension on April 1, 2014. I met with the Tribal Leaders Diabetes Committee by phone this month to get their recommendations for the distribution in FY 2015. Given that the reauthorization is only for one year, they recommended that we keep the distribution the same but continue discussions on how we would change the distribution if we received multi-year funding. We are planning another in-person meeting to continue the discussion.


Posted on Apr 24, 2014

Tribal Leaders Diabetes Committee Meeting

The Tribal Leaders Diabetes Committee met in Rockville, MD, to discuss recommendations on the distribution of FY 2015 funding for the Special Diabetes Program for Indians. Here are pictures from the meeting:

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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - Tribal Leaders Diabetes Committee
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - Tribal Leaders Diabetes Committee


Posted on Apr 23, 2014

Coalition of Large Tribes Meeting

I met with the Coalition of Large Tribes at their Congressional Meeting in March. Here are pictures from the meeting:

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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - Coalition of Large Tribes Meeting
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - Coalition of Large Tribes Meeting


Posted on Apr 23, 2014

California IHS Area Listening Session

I attended a Listening Session with Tribes in the California IHS Area in March after their Annual Tribal Consultation Meeting in Reno, NV. I provided an update on the budget and our agency reform efforts. Here are pictures from the Listening Session:

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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - California IHS Area Listening Session
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - California IHS Area Listening Session
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - California IHS Area Listening Session
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - California IHS Area Listening Session
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - California IHS Area Listening Session
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - California IHS Area Listening Session


Posted on Apr 23, 2014

FAAB Meeting

The IHS Facilities Appropriations Advisory Board (FAAB) met in Rockville in March. Due to flight cancellations from a snowstorm, some members were unable to attend. While not a quorum, the members in attendance discussed IHS facilities issues and planned to hold the next meeting with all members in Seattle, WA, on April 29-30, 2014. Here is a picture from the meeting:

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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - FAAB Meeting


Posted on Apr 18, 2014

Contract Support Costs Update

Consistent with the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2014, the IHS intends to fully fund the estimated amount of contract support costs (CSC) need for contracting and compacting Tribes in fiscal year (FY) 2014. Once our appropriation was apportioned, we distributed the CSC amounts currently identified in the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act agreements and then consulted with the IHS CSC Workgroup on the distribution of any additional amounts necessary to fully fund the estimated CSC need. Since this is the first time in recent history that IHS has had funding legally available to fully fund CSC, we want to make sure the distribution reflects the best estimate of the full amount of CSC for each Tribe. We also know that Tribes want us to distribute this funding as soon as possible.

Therefore, we met with the IHS CSC Workgroup and agreed upon the updates to the available data that were needed to estimate CSC need in FY 2014. Our Area Directors have been instructed to ensure that all Tribes have an opportunity to verify their amounts this month, and we are on track to amend the agreements and distribute the funding by the end of the month. As per our policy, there is a reconciliation process that occurs later in the year using more updated and/or additional information to make any necessary corrections. Also, we are still working on the requests for CSC for new and expanded programs that we have received to date.

If you have any questions about the CSC payments in FY 2014, please contact your Area Director. Thank you to the IHS CSC Workgroup members for their help with this important matter.


Posted on Apr 4, 2014

Contract Support Costs Consultation Session

IHS and BIA are holding a consultation session on Contract Support Costs (CSC) on May 6, 2014, from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Crystal Gateway Marriott Hotel in Arlington, VA, as a part of the upcoming 2014 Tribal Self-Governance Annual Consultation Conference. At this session, we will continue formal consultation and open dialogue on CSC, particularly focusing on working together to identify long-term solutions to this issue. For more information, please review the letter [PDF - 39KB] sent to Tribes.


Posted on Mar 24, 2014

FY 2015 President's Budget Request

On March 20, I held an all-Tribes call to provide an overview of the FY 2015 President's Budget Request for the Indian Health Service. During the call, I provided an overview of the budget request and answered questions. We also provided a set of slides [PDF - 58 KB] summarizing the budget request. We plan to hold another all-Tribes call in 1-2 weeks to provide another opportunity for Tribes to receive an overview of the FY 2015 President's Budget Request.

More information is available in the IHS' Congressional Justification.

We also posted a press release on the FY 2015 President's Budget Request for IHS.


Posted on Mar 21, 2014

Join us on March 24th for a "Tribal Day of Action" for Affordable Care Act Enrollment

Repost from the White House blogExit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov
By Raina Thiele, Associate Director White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs

Last week, Vice President Biden and Health and Human Services Secretary Sebelius spoke directly to tribal leaders and community members on the benefits of the Affordable Care Act for American Indians and Alaska Natives. The Vice President and the Secretary encouraged action from tribal leaders and community members, to get them, their friends, and their relatives enrolled! March 24th is the National Tribal Day of Action on Affordable Care Act enrollment - a perfect opportunity for Indian Country to rally with community partners in health to organize an Affordable Care Act enrollment event. Please join us in this effort to get covered with quality, reliable, and affordable health care insurance before March 31st!

If you’re a member of a federally-recognized tribe and under a certain income level, you might qualify to pay reduced or no costs for a private health care policy, including low or zero out-of-pocket costs. Also, you can check to see if your state has expanded MedicaidExit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov, as you might now qualify!

You can enroll in a healthcare plan on the healthcare marketplaceExit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov at www.healthcare.govExit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov, over the phoneExit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov, or by mailExit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov. And remember, even if you have a private health insurance plan, you can continue to use Indian Health Service or you can explore other options for care. Having a private health insurance plan is a way to ensure that you will receive quality, reliable health care coverage no matter when you get sick. Tell your family and friends to enroll today!

For more information on how the Affordable Care Act impacts Indian Country, go to: http://www.ihs.gov/aca/Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov

Raina Thiele is an Associate Director in the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov.


Posted on Mar 19, 2014

IHS Tribal Budget Formulation National Worksession

The IHS Tribal Budget Formulation National Worksession was held in Washington, D.C., in February. The Budget Formulation Workgroup members reviewed recommendations from Tribes from all IHS Areas to develop national recommendations on the FY2016 IHS Budget. The Tribes updated their recommendation that the full funding need for IHS is $28 billion, and proposed a 17 percent increase to the IHS budget. The Co-chairs presented the recommendations at the HHS Tribal Budget Consultation session the following week. Here are pictures from the meeting:

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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - IHS Tribal Budget Formulation National Worksession, February 2014 in Washington, D.C.
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - IHS Tribal Budget Formulation National Worksession, February 2014 in Washington, D.C.


Posted on Mar 18, 2014

IHS Contract Support Costs Workgroup

The IHS Contract Support Costs (CSC) Workgroup met in February to continue their work on improving CSC estimates in the pre-award/negotiations phase. They also discussed the IHS FY2014 Operating Plan and made recommendations on CSC appropriations issues. Here are pictures from the meeting:

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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - IHS Contract Support Costs Workgroup meeting, February 2014
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - IHS Contract Support Costs Workgroup meeting, February 2014
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - IHS Contract Support Costs Workgroup meeting, February 2014
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - IHS Contract Support Costs Workgroup meeting, February 2014


Posted on Mar 17, 2014

IHS Direct Service Tribes Advisory Committee Quarterly Meeting

I met with the IHS Direct Service Tribes Advisory Committee during their Quarterly Meeting in Phoenix, AZ, in February. Here are pictures from the meeting:

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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - Direct Service Tribes Advisory Committee Quarterly Meeting, February 2014 in Phoenix, AZ
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - Direct Service Tribes Advisory Committee Quarterly Meeting, February 2014 in Phoenix, AZ
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - Direct Service Tribes Advisory Committee Quarterly Meeting, February 2014 in Phoenix, AZ


Posted on Mar 14, 2014

February Tribal Delegation Meetings

IHS held Tribal Delegation Meetings during February with the Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation, the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, Comanche Tribe, and the Great Plains Tribal Chairman's Association. Here are pictures from those meetings:

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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - The Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation delegation and Dr. Roubideaux
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe delegation and Mr. Robert McSwain, Deputy Director for Management Operations
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - Comanche Tribe delegation and RADM Sandra Pattea, Deputy Director for Intergovernmental Affairs
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - The Great Plains Tribal Chairman's Association and Dr. Roubideaux


Posted on Mar 13, 2014

IHS Area Listening Sessions

I recently sent a letter [PDF - 26 KB] to Tribes concerning my plan to schedule and personally attend listening sessions in all 12 IHS Areas. Area Directors will be working with Tribes to schedule these sessions sometime this year.


Posted on Mar 12, 2014

United South and Eastern Tribes Impact Meeting

I met with the United South and Eastern Tribes (USET) Board of Directors at the USET Meeting in February. I also attended the HHS Regional Consultation that occurred that week at the same venue. Here are pictures from the USET Board of Directors Meeting:

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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - USET Impact Meeting, February 2014
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    Thumbnail - clicking will open full size image - USET Impact Meeting, February 2014


Posted on Mar 11, 2014

Contract Support Costs Consultation at NCAI

BIA and IHS are hosting a consultation session on Contract Support Costs (CSC) at the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) Executive Winter Session meeting on March 11, 2014, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. EST. Here is the agenda [PDF - 99 KB] and the letter [PDF - 55 KB] announcing the consultation, which includes the congressional language regarding CSC in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2014. The session is located in the Westin Washington City Center, Washington, D.C., and we have made available a conference line available for those who wish to attend remotely (dial 1-888-390-3407 code 9688103).


Posted on Mar 7, 2014

Update: IHS Area Tribal Listening Sessions

I sent a letter to Tribes to notify them of my plan to schedule and personally attend tribal listening sessions in all 12 IHS Areas this year. Area Directors are to work with the Tribes in their Area to schedule a time for the listening session. Here is a copy of the letter [PDF - 26 KB].