Health | Law | National

ANTHC accepts $153M settlement in contract support cost case

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

The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium will receive $153 million to settle a contract support cost dispute with the federal government.

ANTHC entered into self-determination contracts with the Indian Health Service to provide service for more than 143,000 Alaska Natives and American Indians in Alaska. But for the past 14 years, the agency failed to pay contract support costs even after the U.S. Supreme Court twice ruled that the money was owed.

“We are pleased with today’s settlement of the long overdue payment – this is a significant step and will help us fulfill our commitment to provide essential health care and services to our people,” ANTHC Chairman and President Andy Teuber said in a press release. “Yet, while this settlement will enable us to continue improving critically needed health care and access for one of the nation’s most underserved populations, we continue to struggle due to the funding gap left by an overall IHS budget that is less than half of what is needed to provide basic health care for our people."

According to ANTHC, the $153 million is the largest single settlement reached with IHS. As of May, some $275 million was paid to other tribes and tribal health organizations but hundreds of million of dollars more are still owed.

The IHS and the Bureau of Indian Affairs have agreed to pay full contract support costs for this fiscal year and the next. Congress also directed the agencies to consult with tribes and come up with a long-term plan.

Get the Story:
ANTHC wins $153 million settlement (Alaska Public Radio Network 7/1)
Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium to receive $153 million in overdue federal payments (The Alaska Dispatch 6/30)

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:
Cherokee Nation v. Leavitt (March 1, 2005)

Related Stories:
IHS pays $275M to settle claims for back contract support costs (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)

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