Senate Indian Affairs Committee expands look into 'substandard' care at Indian Health Service
The Senate Indian Affairs Committee is expanding its inquiry into the "substandard" level of care at the Indian Health Service.
The panel is holding an oversight hearing next Wednesday into the Great Plains Area at the agency. Tribes in the region -- particularly those in Nebraska and South Dakota -- have consistently complained about management failures and cutbacks in service that have contributed to serious problems at hospitals and clinics on their reservations.
To address the concerns, five top officials from the Department of Health and Human Services will appear before the committee. Included is Robert G. McSwain, the de facto director of the IHS who has promised to bring change and improve accountability in the region, according to leaders of the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska who have met with him and his staff during frequent trips to Washington, D.C.