Health | Law

Alaska tribes still in contract support costs negotiations with IHS






The Alaska Native Medical Center in Anchorage is managed by the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium. Photo from ANTHC

Tribal health care providers in Alaska so far have received $449 million to resolve contract support costs disputes with the Indian Health Service, The Alaska Journal of Commerce reports.

Another 11 providers remain in negotiations, the Journal reported. The money is owed under self-determination contracts that were never fully funded by the IHS.

“The federal government has broken too many promises with tribes and though we have more work to do, I am pleased that we are seeing good progress with Alaska tribes receiving the money they are owed,” Sen. Mark Begich (D-Alaska) said in a press release. “Failure to pay the full costs is unacceptable and I will continue to use my position on the Senate Indian Affairs Committee to keep up the pressure on the federal government.”

For years, the IHS failed to provide full contract support costs. It took U.S. Supreme Court and a change in administration for the federal government to finally pay up.

The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium settled for $153 million, the largest amount so far.

Get the Story:
Tribes still waiting for IHS contract support cost settlements (The Alaska Journal of Commerce 8/14)

Federal Register Notices:
Contract Support Costs (April 8, 2014)
Contract Support Costs (February 21, 2014)

Relevant Documents:
FY14 Omnibus Text & Joint Explanatory Statement | Detailed Omnibus Summary | Subcommittee Allocations

Supreme Court Decisions:
Salazar v. Ramah Navajo Chapter (June 18, 2012)
Cherokee Nation v. Leavitt:

Related Stories:
Mark Begich: A permanent solution for contract support costs (07/30)
IHS pays $53M to settle another contract support cost dispute (7/25)
Native Sun News: Great Plains tribes call for full contract funds (7/23)
IHS pays $29.5M to end contract dispute with Cherokee Nation (07/15)
ANTHC accepts $153M settlement in contract support cost case (07/01)
Michael Gross: Tribes must protect self-determination contracts (05/09)
IHS pays $275M to settle claims for back contract support costs (05/02)
Opinion: Funds for contract support costs should be mandatory (05/02)
IHS resolves some contract support costs claims for $200M (4/28)
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius resigns (04/11)
BIA and IHS hold another consultation on contract support costs (04/08)
Mark Begich: Pay back tribes for overdue contract support costs (03/03)
BIA and IHS schedule consultation about contract support costs (02/21)
BIA and IHS agree to fully fund contract support costs for 2014 (2/18)
Budget bill urges solution to contract support cost battle (01/15)