HHS SUMMER 2007 INDIAN COUNTRY BUS TOUR TO PROMOTE PREVENTION AND HEALTHIER LIVING
This summer, as part of the “A Healthier US Starts Here” initiative, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is joining local officials and its health care partners to raise awareness of the importance of preventing chronic disease and illness, promote Medicare preventive benefits, and provide information about how beneficiaries can take action to maintain and improve their health.
By the end of August, a mobile bus tour will have visited each of the 48 continental states to promote preventive services with Medicare beneficiaries, families, caregivers, health professionals, community organizations, civic and state leaders and others who want to help people live longer, healthier lives.
While the bus tour is promoting healthier living with the country as a whole, the Indian Health Service has joined with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to promote healthier living not only as it affects Medicare beneficiaries but as it affects the health promotion/disease prevention activities that Indian Country practices on a daily basis to promote healthier living.
“This effort supports the Indian Health Service’s goal to create healthier American Indian and Alaska Native communities by developing and implementing effective health promotion and chronic disease prevention programs,” said Dr. Charles Grim, Director of the Indian Health Service. “This is accomplished in collaboration with our key stakeholders, the American Indian and Alaska Native people, and by building on individual, family, and community strengths and assets.”
On April 18, 2007, HHS hosted a kickoff event with Tribal Leaders and National Tribal Organizations in Washington, D.C. at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian. Since this event, HHS Regional Offices have been working to finalize Tribal stops through August 2007 with the assistance of the Indian Health Service’s Health Promotion Disease Prevention Office, and CMS Regional Offices. Many stops will also include recognition of successful tribal initiatives promoting healthy living, particularly those related to diabetes and wellness.
Among the states where tribal events related to the bus tour are expected to occur in July and August are South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Florida, Alabama, Montana, Idaho, Oregon, California, Arizona and Nevada.