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Study: Health disparities among urban Indians

"Editor�s Note: A group of medical professionals employed statistics from the census bureau to examine health disparities that exist among Natives living in urban locales such as Tulsa and Oklahoma City.This is an edited version of their final report. The authors are: Mei L. Castor, MD, MPH, Michael S. Smyser, MPH, Maile M. Taualii, MPH, Alice N. Park, MPH, Shelley A. Lawson, MPA, and Ralph A. Forquera, MPH.

Despite their increasing numbers, little is known about the health of American Indians/Alaska Natives living in urban areas. We examined the health status of American Indian/Alaska Native populations served by 34 federally funded urban Indian health organizations.

Over the past three decades, American Indians and Alaska Natives have increasingly relocated from rural and reservation communities to the urban centers of the United States. Census data show that 6-percent of American Indians/Alaska Natives resided in these areas in 2000, up from 38% in 1970.

Although urban living offers more of certain opportunities, the departure of American Indians/Alaska Natives from reservations has typically resulted in a loss of access to health care, historically provided by the Indian Health Service (IHS). To provide health care for the increasingly urban American Indian/Alaska Native (AIAN) population, the IHS awards contracts and grants to 34 nonprofit agencies located in major metropolitan areas across the United States. These agencies, referred to as urban Indian health organizations (UIHOs), exist largely in cities designated in the past as AIAN relocation sites by the federal government."

Get the Story:
Healthcare and the urban Indian (The Native American Time 8/23)

Interior 2007 Appropriations:
H.R.5386 | Report 109-465 | Interior Subcommittee Reports FY 2007 Spending Bill Press Release | House Appropriations Committee Press Release

FY2007 HHS Budget in Brief:

Relevant Links:
National Council of Urban Indian Health -
Indian Health Service -

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