SPH creates one of nation’s first American Indian Public Health and Wellness Certificates

Charlie Plain | January 23, 2020

The School of Public Health has launched its American Indian Public Health and Wellness Certificate  — one of the nation’s only certificates to focus on educating students on how to work respectfully and effectively with federally recognized Tribes and American Indian communities.  

Associate Professor Linda Frizzell

“The certificate will introduce students to the American Indian health care and services system, which is unlike any other in the country,” says program director and Assistant Professor Linda Frizzell. “It serves the poorest, sickest, and most remote population in the United States.”

The certificate is designed for graduate students, state and county public health staff, health care providers and administrators, non-profit organizations, and the public. The intent of the program is to increase the size of a culturally prepared workforce familiar with accurate American Indian history, cultural traditions, health care practices, and governing policies. 

In particular, students will examine:

  • The health and wellness knowledge of the “First Americans”
  • Public health issues facing American Indian communities
  • Historical information
  • Legislation
  • Federal government and tribal relations
  • Health care financing
  • The American Indian public health system and its complex services and regional variations
  • The unique governmental structures and culture among the 574 Federally Recognized Tribes, 74 State recognized Tribes and 35 federally funded Urban Indian programs

“Students will increase their understanding of ‘Indian Country,’ learn accurate historical background, analyze legislation, address their own cultural humility, and be equipped to improve the health of American Indians across the U.S.,” says Frizzell.

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