Thune still pushing for Indian Health Service reform

Published: May. 25, 2016 at 6:42 PM MDT
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South Dakota Senator John Thune is still pushing for reform of the Indian Health Service.

The bulk of Thune's weekly call with reporters Wednesday revolved around the IHS Accountability Act he and Wyoming Senator John Barrasso have introduced in Washington.

All three of the IHS hospitals in this area, Pine Ridge, Rosebud and Sioux San have come under scrutiny from Medicare and were threatened with having their ability to get Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements cut off.

Sen. Thune says, "Those are three that were so bad, so they basically got on the radar screen to the point where emergency steps had to be taken. And that's what's unfortunate about this circumstance. it shouldn't have happened in the first place and we want to make sure it doesn't happen again."

In a release Wednesday afternoon, Representative Kristi Noem applauded the introduction of a bill in the House that includes $6 million to support IHS facilities facing accreditation emergencies.