Earlier this month, Indian Health Service’s (IHS) newly tapped director Roselyn Tso (Diné) launched a tour across Indian Country to gain a better perspective on national and regional issues affecting the tribal members served by the Indian health system.

Tso plans to visit the entire IHS service area within 45 days, according to an IHS statement. She began the tour the week of Oct. 13 at the IHS Mashpee Wampanoag Service Unit in Massachusetts and the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation’s clinic in Connecticut. She has since visited sites in northern California, South Dakota, Oregon and Alaska.

 Last week, Tso tweeted about her visit to the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium in Anchorage, Alaska.

 “They have quite an impressive health program, with Alaska Natives visiting their facility for care from across the state,” Tso wrote. “We also met with Senator Lisa Murkowski, Alaska’s senior U.S. Senator.”

Never miss Indian Country’s biggest stories and breaking news. Sign up to get our reporting sent straight to your inbox every weekday morning. 

The IHS says it will use the information gathered from the tour to address challenges and build on progress to support best practices and innovative approaches to health care, strengthen management operations, improve communication and inform leadership as they set priorities for the agency. Tso plans to visit more sites in the coming year.

 “When I first started as the IHS director, I said I would strive to protect and enhance our relationship with tribal leaders, tribal governments and urban Indian health partners,” Tso said in a statement. “We can best accomplish this by an improved understanding of tribal health and urban Indian health care systems and their needs. That is why this tour is important to me as I gain an understanding of the needs and challenges across Indian Country. This is my way of opening the door to better communication across the agency.”

More Stories Like This

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Awards $35 Million to Reduce Suicide in Indian Country
‘We are in dark times’ | Reeling from Four Overdose Deaths in Four Days, Lummi Nation Calls for Urgent Action
IHS Awards $1.5 Million to Address Alzheimer's Disease 
Statement from IHS Director Roselyn Tso on the Availability of Updated COVID-19 Vaccines
Promote Hope for the Future: Addressing Suicide in Indigenous Youth

The Native News Health Desk is made possible by a generous grant from the National Institute for Health Care Management Foundation as well as sponsorship support from the American Dental Association. This grant funding and sponsorship support have no effect on editorial consideration in Native News Online. 
About The Author
Native News Online Staff
Author: Native News Online StaffEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Native News Online is one of the most-read publications covering Indian Country and the news that matters to American Indians, Alaska Natives and other Indigenous people. Reach out to us at [email protected].