Native American Treaties and Health Care



DR. DONALD WARNE: We are
actually the only population born with a legal
right to healthcare. And that's based on treaties,
which are essentially contracts between tribes and the
federal government. And those treaties
state that we are exchanging land and
natural resources, like the rivers
here in Arizona, for certain social services
including healthcare, education and housing. And unfortunately, we have
not had adequate resources to meet healthcare needs, housing
needs or education needs. And specifically when you look
at the Indian Health Service, it's funded at a terribly
low rate per person. And, for example, if you look
at the funding per recipient of healthcare from the
Veterans Administration that's well over $5,000
per person, per year. Under Medicaid, it's well over
$3,500 per person, per year. For Indian Health Service,
again the only population born with a legal
right to healthcare It's about $1,800 or $1,900
per person, per year. So we see tremendous disparities. And Certainly that's not
going to be solved in a clinic or
in a hospital That has to be solved
at the policy level.

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