Sunday, April 5, 2009

Plans for IHS Stimulus Funds

A total of $500 million was provided to the Indian Health Service in ARRA to include $85 million for health information technology. The health information technology funds will go for telehealth services and infrastructure requirements. Approximately 20% of the funds will be used for hardware acquisition to use to modernize infrastructure relating to security, networking communications, and health information technology.

The Resource and Patient Management System will be modernized with enhancements for population health applications. These purchases will be completed through new contracts among vendors. Approximately 95% of the health IT activities will be carried out through commercial contracts but may also be carried out under P.L. 93-638 contracts with a Tribe or Tribal organization. Plans are to obligate 75% of the ARRA funds in FY 2009, and 25% in FY 1010.

In addition, a number of new acquisitions are anticipated for software development and related services. These new acquisitions will also be awarded via appropriate contract vehicles, as well as through existing Tribal contracts. The IHS has several existing GSA competitively awarded contract vehicles that will be used to accommodate ARRA funding.

IHS plans to distribute $20 million for equipment. The majority of funds for equipment will be used to acquire medical equipment. In addition, IHS will support ambulances for 84 tribal and IHS emergency medical services programs. GSA and IHS support 175 ambulances nationwide, and the ARRA funds will be used to replace ambulances exceeding the span of 10 years or 100,000 miles.

Another $68 million will be provided for sanitation facilities construction, $227 million for healthcare facilities construction, and $100 million for maintaining and improving safety, and efficiency in existing facilities.