Editorial: Reponsibility for Indian health care

"One of the great fears about universal health care stems from the government's own track record. It's not pretty. For proof, look no further than the U.S. Indian Health Service. The United States promised health care to American Indians in treaties that also allowed the new country to secure title for millions of acres of land.

"Our government has a legal responsibility to provide health care for American Indians, but we have a moral responsibility to ensure we provide the best care possible," Sen. Patty Murray recently said on the Senate floor.

The Senate is expected to vote this week on the reauthorization of the Indian Health Care Improvement Act. The law expired in 2001. Enough. It's time for the Senate to send a signal that this nation is willing to own its legal and moral responsibilities.

The best care possible? Clearly that ought to be the nation's aspiration."

Get the Story:
Editorial: U.S. Senate: Best care possible (The Seattle Post-Intelligencer 1/28)

Indian Health Care Improvement Act Amendments:
S.1200 | H.R.1328

House Energy and Commerce Committee Documents:
Summary | Manager's Amendment | Press Release | Webcast

Relevant Documents:
Letter to President Bush | Letter to Alberto Gonzales | DOJ White Paper

Relevant Links:
Indian Health Service - http://www.ihs.gov
National Indian Health Board - http://www.nihb.org

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