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NEWS

Chairman Ortiz a Leader on Boards of National and Regional Indian Health Groups

April 27, 2011 –

MAYETTA:  Steve Ortiz, Tribal Chairman, was in Washington, D.C. last week where he moderated several panels at the National Tribal Health Reform Implementation Summit sponsored by the National Indian Health Board (NIHB) www.nihb.org .  The summit was a two-day event that brought federal leaders and those from Indian Country together to discuss issues relevant to American Indian/Alaska Native health policy.

Ortiz is on the NIHB board whose purpose is to maintain communication with area health boards, and national Indian organizations, Tribes and American Indian and Alaska Native people. The NIHB gives voice to American Indian and Alaska Native health policy concerns through participation in national organizations ranging from the Association of State Medicaid directors to the Indian Health Service Leadership Council.  Also at the national level, Ortiz was selected to sit on the Health & Human Services (HHS) Secretary’s Tribal Advisory Committee that first met last December under the Obama administration.

The sessions Ortiz moderated last week were titled “To Insure or Not Insure: A Panel Discussion”, “Grant Opportunities for Tribes and Tribal Organizations under the Affordable Care Act, Administration for Children and Families (ACF)”, “State Based Health Insurance Exchanges: What Do They Mean for Individual Indians and Tribes” and “Public Health and Prevention and the Affordable Care Act”.

The week before, Chairman Ortiz was in Oklahoma City where he attended a meeting as vice president of the Oklahoma City Area-Intertribal Health Board, a non-profit organization established in 1972 to provide a unified voice for the 41 federally recognized tribes located in the states of Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. Board membership includes representatives from the 12 service units in the Indian Health Service Oklahoma City Area.

This week the chairman is back in Mayetta and is conducting meetings with Tribal Council today and tomorrow.

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Chairman Ortiz moderating a panel at the National Tribal Health Care Reform Implementation Summit held in Washington, D.C. April 19-20.

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Chairman Ortiz with Charles Galbraith, Associate Director, Office of Public Engagement for the White House, at the Washington, D.C. conference.

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Left to right:  Dr. Yvette Roubideaux, Director of Indian Health Service, Chairman Ortiz, and Randy Grinnell, Deputy Director of IHS, during the conference in Washington, D.C.

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The Board of Directors for the Oklahoma City Area Inter-Tribal Health Board: Front row, left to right, Thomas John (chairman), Steve Ortiz (vice chairman), Mickey Perrcy (treasurer) and John Ballard.  Back row, left to right,  Chris Tall Bear, Seneca Smith, J.T. Petherick, Marshall Gover, Cheryl McClellan, Diddy Nelson, Kevin Meeks, and Tom Anderson. Not pictured is Diana Autaubo (secretary), Lupe Gooday, and Nick Gonzales.