2017 Legislative Priorities

The top 5 federal priorities as voted upon by attendees of the October CRIHB 47th Annual meeting are as follows:

  1. Indian Health Services (IHS) Appropriations
  2. Special Diabetes Program for Indians (SDPI) funding
  3. Mental Health/Substance Abuse programs
  4. Affordable Care Act (ACA)/Indian Health Care Improvement Act (IHCIA) definition of American Indian
  5. Medicaid/Medicare Policy

The top 5 state priorities are as follows:

  1. Restore the $6.4 million Indian Health Program
  2. Increase CalWORKs substance abuse program funding
  3. Advocate for Tribal Health Programs before the government
  4. Reduce mental health disparities
  5. Bring Dental Health Aide Therapy to California Tribes

2015 Legislative Priorities

Top federal priorities, in order of importance, include:

  1. Congressional funding of IHS programs
  2. Special Diabetes for American Indians grant funding
  3. Tribal Community Best Practices/culturally appropriate services
  4. Medicaid-Medicare policy
  5. Affordable Care Act/Indian Healthcare Improvement Act implementation, e.g. require private insurance companies to accept health providers licensed in other states
  6. Mental health/substance abuse programs, e.g. suicide prevention
  7. IHS facilities funding issues, e.g. funding Youth Regional Treatment Centers and changing Facilities Priority List
  8. Advocate for Tribal Health Programs before federal agencies
  9. Protect tribal sovereignty and manage federal services
  10. Federal consultation

Top state priorities, in order of importance, include:

  1. Restoring $6.4 million Indian Health Program
  2. Maintaining $2.3 million CalWORKs Indian Clinic Substance Abuse Program
  3. Advocating for Tribal Health Programs before state agencies, e.g. Medi-Cal, mental health
  4. State funding for Tribal facilities
  5. Advocating for Tribal Health Programs in the Covered California Marketplace, e.g. Tribal sponsorship
  6. State consultation

Other priorities, in order of importance, include:

  1. Protecting Tribal sovereignty
  2. Land and cultural rights
  3. Environmental issues that impact health, including water
  4. Traditional hunting and fishing rights.

Six participants wrote in “Youth Prevention” or “Youth Funding” as a priority. Another wrote in “amending the Indian Self Determination Education and Assistance Act in order to ensure that Federal Torts Claim Act coverage applies to all patients of Tribal Health Programs.” Other “write in” issues included more preventative services, streamlining HEDIS/GPRA, and elder care.

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