Tribal Health Policy


This project provides the necessary support to facilitate an open and objective forum to address American Indian health care concerns, policy issues and Indian health budgetary priorities by operating the Tribal Health Steering Committee consisting of tribal leaders from Indian tribes in Arizona, Nevada and Utah. The Area Director of the Phoenix Area Indian Health Service and key staff are participants in the Steering Committee meetings. The Steering Committee serves as the Phoenix Area Budget Team and advises the Area with regard to planning the annual consultation session on the IHS budget. Information on health risks and Indian health care policy is disseminated to the Steering Committee and all tribal leaders in the Phoenix Area. All tribal leaders in the Phoenix Area are notified and asked to participate in tribal consultation meetings and quarterly Steering Committee meetings.

Through the mechanism of the Tribal Health Steering Committee, American Indian health concerns in the Phoenix Area, among tribes in Arizona, Nevada and Utah are identified and analyzed. The Tohono O’odham Nation and the Pascua Yaqui Tribe are also involved in the project as the Phoenix Area Indian Health Service serves communities of the two tribes located in the Phoenix Area. Ongoing information exchange and collaboration with the Navajo Nation also occurs on a regular basis and there is communication with the Tucson Area IHS and the Navajo Area IHS as needed.

The Steering Committee advises the Phoenix Area IHS, the Indian Health Service (IHS) Headquarters and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on tribal health policy matters and assists in the coordination, facilitation and agenda planning of tribal consultation meetings. A representative of the Steering Committee is selected to serve on the National Indian Health Board (NIHB) and tribal leaders serve on other HHS and IHS national work groups and task forces that schedule meetings throughout the year.  Click here to download the document. Steering Committee staff analyzes and distributes information to the tribes in Arizona, Nevada and Utah on the impact of pertinent federal policy and information on budgetary concerns. In this regard the Committee works with tribal organizations in the region to address common concerns among all tribes. These are the Indian Health Board of Nevada, the Intertribal Council of Nevada, the Utah Tribal Leaders Council and the Inter Tribal Council of Arizona.

Facilitation of Federal/Tribal Consultation Policies

The project creates a forum for the implementation of federal tribal consultation policies as directed by the following:
Presidential Executive Memorandum of November 5, 2009-Tribal Consultation (Signed by President Barak Obama)


Gwenda Gorman, Intirim Health Policy Director