Montana Public Radio

Indian Health Service

As Montana sees a surge in COVID-19 cases, medical facilities, particularly within tribal nations, are being pushed to their limits.

Kaci Wallette is a nurse at the Poplar Community Hospital, a facility in northeast Montana, where a full staff consists of three nurses and three certified nursing assistants.

This story is part of a series that looks at potentially lasting ways Montana adapted during the pandemic. It’s funded in part by the Solutions Journalism Network. 

After the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began advising against face to face interactions, Montana healthcare providers sought to expand non emergency telehealth appointments. It's a trend that could keep going.

Last weekend, Montana saw its biggest spike yet in COVID-19 cases. YPR reports how the disease is impacting Native Americans across the state.

The Indian Health Service is facilitating coronavirus testing in tribal communities across the United States and in Montana. 

FRONTLINE and The Wall Street Journal investigate a pediatrician accused of sexually abusing Native American boys for years. This photograph was taken on the Blackfeet reservation in Browning, Montana.
Mike Shum / Wall Street Journal/FRONTLINE

After receiving pressure from congressional lawmakers, the Indian Health Service is providing some members of the U.S. Senate with redacted report on its response to a former doctor’s abuse patients in Montana and South Dakota. Released this week, the document details the failed oversight on former doctor Stanley Patrick Weber as he abused young Native-American boys.

Ambulances at the Glacier County EMS facility.
Aaron Bolton / Montana Public Radio

Imagine calling 911 for an ambulance and the dispatcher tells you there isn’t one available. That could soon be the case for many Glacier County residents. The county says its emergency medical services are close to folding amid the local government’s long standing financial woes.

Indian Health Service logo.
Indian Health Service / IHS

Three Blackfeet Nation members have filed a civil lawsuit arguing the Indian Health Service violated their treaty rights when it allegedly failed to prevent a former IHS doctor from abusing them. 

Ambulance
iStock

Glacier County is no longer transferring patients from the U.S. Indian Health Service’s Browning facility to other hospitals. The county is now suing the IHS, saying the federal agency owes over $1.8 million for ambulance rides dating back to 2014. IHS says it can’t verify the county’s claim.


Crow women face long wait times, drives and confidentiality concerns when it comes to receiving reproductive healthcare. That’s according to a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation released Thursday.


The federal Indian Health Service has failed to meet its own standards for prescribing opioids. That’s the takeaway from a federal audit released last week, by the inspector general of the U.S. Health and Human Services Department.

Pages