Author Archives: ADA

Creighton Hosts Summer Enrichment Program for Native American Students

Omaha, Neb.—Creighton University School of Dentistry is hosting a four-week Pre-Dental Summer Enrichment Program for Native American students June 20-July 15.

The program is for tribally-enrollment Native American high school or undergraduate students with strong cultural and tribal affiliation interested in becoming dentists. Students will have an opportunity to learn about dental careers; participate in clinics, labs and classes in a dental school environment; prepare for admission to dental school; and learn about financial aid.

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2011 Arizona American Indian Oral Health Summit

John Lewis, Executive Director, Inter Tribal Council of Arizona

The 2011 Arizona American Indian Oral Health Summit brought together representatives from tribes, urban Indian organizations, IHS and key state, public health and private sector stakeholders to share information, resources and strategies for improving access to dental services and the oral health of Native communities in Arizona.  The two-day Summit focused on important knowledge and capacity building issues and facilitated peer-to-peer mentorship and collaborative problem solving.  (Please download the Summit report here).

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American Dental Association Testimony Before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment & Related Agencies

In testimony before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment & Related Agencies, May 3, 2011, the American Dental Association urged Congress to increase resources for IHS programs as a means of: addressing the early childhood caries crisis in Indian Country; expanding Dental Clinical and Preventative Support Centers; improving health information technology, including the complete deployment of Electronic Dental Record; and, upgrading dental facilities.
Download the ADA testimony here.

The Friends of Indian Health, a national coalition of over 50 Native and non-Native organizations and stakeholders, also provided testimony encouraging Congress to: enhance IHS oral health professional recruitment and retention efforts; increase the loan repayments account; and, improve IHS support of contracted services.
Download the Friends of Indian Health testimony here.

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Friends of Indian Health

The American Dental Association formed the Friends of Indian Health in 1997 to educate Congress on the disparity of disease and access to health care experienced by American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs) and the urgent need to increase annual appropriations for the Indian Health Service (IHS).  At that time, the IHS budget was $2 billion and Congress repeatedly had noted in its annual appropriations bills that the allocated funds were not sufficiently meeting the needs of Indian people.

Recognizing that many health groups sounding the same message could be more powerful than individual groups voicing their own smaller concerns, the Friends came together to advocate for one total annual appropriation for the IHS.  Over the years, the group has met with Administration officials at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) who prepare the IHS budget,  lobbied the Congressional budget committees, testified before the appropriations committees, and worked with the Native American Congressional Caucus and the Coalition for Health Funding to increase IHS funding.  Since 1997, the IHS budget has continued to grow and its budget now exceeds $4 billion.

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