American Indian and Alaska Native Health Services as a System of Rural Care

  • Everett R. Rhoades


With few exceptions (Thornton, Sandefur, & Grasmick, 1982), Indian* life in the Americas has always been rural, a mode that continued with settlement on reservations in the 19th century (Figure 1). Many Native Americans today continue subsistence living—that is, hunting and gathering, and farming—and as will be noted later, many Indian communities are actually frontier in nature. Even with considerable migration to urban areas, especially during and after the Second World War, reservations remained the site of tribal governments. Combined with the strong impulse of Indian people to remain in their local communities, this has resulted basically in a rural setting for Indians, who receive most of their health care from the federal government. The challenges in integrating health programs among small numbers of individuals residing in remote locations are great indeed.


Indian Health Emergency Medical Service Native Health Indian People Indian Health Service 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Everett R. Rhoades
    • 1
  1. 1.Native American Prevention Research CenterUniversity of Oklahoma College of Public HealthOklahoma CityUSA

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