How To Make A FOIA Request
Please read before you submit a FOIA request
Please Note: Agencies are not required to answer questions posed as FOIA requests, nor are we required to respond to requests by creating records.
It is the policy of the Indian Health Service (IHS) FOIA Office to respond to all written or electronically submitted requests for records that exist at the time that the request is made. See 45 CFR Part 5 .
You have the option to submit a FOIA Request by mail, email or online. For all submissions, please be sure to include all required information.
If you request records from your medical file, that is not a FOIA request. A request for records from your medical file is a Privacy Act request. You are entitled to a copy of your own medical records. You can request your medical record by visiting the hospital or service unit where you were seen and fill out Form IHS-810, Authorization for Use or Disclosure of Protected Health Information.
If you cannot print the form, the medical records offices in our facilities will have this form for you to complete. However, if you are requesting information for a deceased patient, or if you are representing a person who is requesting the records, then it becomes a FOIA. In that case, the only way that information can be released is with signed authorization/notarized consent that you are 1) the executor of the deceased's estate; and/or 2) documentation that would prove that you are next of kin or representing the next of kin. FOIA Privacy requests or information.
- HIPAA Privacy Rule when requesting personal health information from any Federal Agency. [PDF - 633 KB]
Please contact the Indian Health Service (FOIA) Office if you have additional questions.
The IHS FOIA Officer is the only official authorized to release or withhold information from Agency documents and records. This authority is specified in the Federal Register, Volume 53, No. 227, dated November 28, 1988, Subpart C, Section 5.31.
Mail or Email Requests
For submitting a FOIA Request by mail or email, please review the Sample FOIA Request guidance prior to submitting a request.
Mail your request to the Indian Health Service FOIA Office
Division of Regulatory and Policy Coordination/FOIA
5600 Fishers Lane, Mailstop 09E70
Rockville, Maryland 20857
Email your status inquiry to: IHSFOIAMailbox@ihs.gov.
Online FOIA Request
You may also submit a FOIA Request using our online form. Please visit the FOIA Request Form page and fill in all required information.
If you have questions regarding the submission of or how to fill out the form you may contact the Indian Health Service FOIA Office at: