indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+
ph: 202 630 8439   fax: 202 318 2182
Falmouth Institute Online Training
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
Rural Alaska Natives at risk due to lack of in-home water
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
Filed Under: Health

Alaska Natives who live in rural homes without running water are more likely to suffer from respiratory and skin infections, according to a study released on Tuesday.

While in-house water is enjoyed by 99.4 percent of U.S. homes, only about 84 percent of rural Alaskan homes have complete sanitation services. Of the Alaska Native homes surveyed in the study, only 73 percent had water service.

The disparity was correlated to disproportionately high rates of certain diseases among rural Alaska Natives. In some villages, infants were 11 times as likely and elders were more than twice as likely to be hospitalized for health problems.

Study authors warned that the data doesn't prove that inadequate sanitation services caused respiratory and skin infections. But when they looked at villages with the lowest level of water services, they found higher rates for respiratory infections among infants and for skin and soft-tissue infections among adults.

And in particular region with the lowest level of in-home water service, more than a quarter of all infants are hospitalized each year for influenza or for pneumonia. Infant pneumonia can lead to lifelong respiratory problems.

"Access to clean water for hand washing and hygiene is extremely important to preventing disease," said author Thomas Hennessy, M.D., director of Arctic Investigation Programs at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "Without better access to in-home water for hand washing and hygiene, Alaska Natives will continue to face higher rates of largely preventable infections."

Despite the clear benefits of in-home water service, federal funding for sanitation facilities construction has flat-lined under the Bush administration. The fiscal year 2009 budget seeks $94 million for the program, the same level as 2008 and 2007.

"What we have in many of our villages, still, unfortunately, is a system we refer to as the honey-bucket system," Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), the vice chair of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee said in January during consideration of the Indian Health Care Improvement Act.

"It is not a very refined system. In fact, it is a system that, for those of us in the state, we look at with shame and say: For Alaska Natives, for Alaskans to have to rely on this as their sanitation system is offensive," she added.

The study is being published by the American Journal of Public Health. It was the result of a two-year collaboration between the CDC, the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium and the Indian Health Service.

Relevant Documnents:
CDC Press Release | Study Abstract | Full Article [requires purchase or subscription]

FY2009 Budget Documents:
HHS In Brief | GPRA Performance | More IHS Documents

Related Stories:
IHS budget sees cut in final year of Bush era (2/6)



Copyright © Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Native Sun News: Oglala Sioux Tribe battles uranium mine (4/18)
Clara Caufield: BIA audits Northern Cheyenne police force (4/18)
10th Circuit affirms conviction for murder of Arapaho man (4/18)
Jay Daniels: Cobell settlement was flawed from beginning (4/18)
Dwanna Robertson: Muscogee Nation returns to homeland (4/18)
Peter d'Errico: Washington team makes colonial invasion (4/18)
Northern Arapaho Tribe receives $157M trust settlement (4/18)
Agua Caliente Band leaseholders seek $7M in tax refunds (4/18)
Oneida Nation sends $11M to county as part of settlement (4/18)
JPR: Klamath Tribes want Congress to approve water deal (4/18)
Judge dismisses Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe election suit (4/18)
ASU News: Navajo students enjoy learning their language (4/18)
Former NFL player jailed for DUI on Salt River Reservation (4/18)
BIA advances off-reservation casino projects in California (4/18)
Tunica-Biloxi Tribe reportedly operating casino at net loss (4/18)
Cherokee Nation to break ground on new hotel with casino (4/18)
Shoshone-Bannock Tribes not planing to offer poker games (4/18)
Arizona tribes close to $1B mark in gaming revenue sharing (4/18)
Group opposes Catawba Nation casino bid in North Carolina (4/18)
Native Sun News: Guilty verdict in death of Lower Brule boy (4/17)
Native Sun News: Paper brings home four first place awards (4/17)
Doug George-Kanentiio: Governor carries on divisive tactics (4/17)
Navajo president criticizes NIGA for withdrawing from event (4/17)
Crystal Willcuts: NFL trickster speaks with a crooked tongue (4/17)
Opinion: NFL team owner flashes money to defend racial slur (4/17)
Ten reservations account for biggest share of Cobell buyback (4/17)
Rosebud Sioux Tribe opposes megaloads through reservation (4/17)
Indian artists seek more control over popular annual market (4/17)
Panel to look into death of pregnant Indian woman in Mexico (4/17)
Lynn Valbuena returns to chairman post at San Manuel Band (4/17)
Yale University museum accused of stealing Tlingit artifacts (4/17)
Navajo Nation Council speaker still on leave amid court fight (4/17)
BIA asked to invalidate Shinnecock Nation's new constitution (4/17)
Onondaga Nation is negotiations over tobacco taxation issue (4/17)
Sen. Warren addresses Native American controversy in book (4/17)
Race relations council looking to boost efforts in border town (4/17)
Opinion: Federal recognition for Virginia tribes long overdue (4/17)
Opinion: University must eventually eliminate Ute nickname (4/17)
Appeals court in Canada rules for Metis in Indian status caes (4/17)
9th Circuit hears dispute over Redding Rancheria gaming site (4/17)
Coeur d'Alene Tribe set to launch new poker games on May 2 (4/17)
Judge hears arguments in lawsuit against Jamul Band casino (4/17)
Opinion: Poarch Creeks qualify for Class III gaming in Florida (4/17)
Opinion: Gaming interests prepare for next attack on Florida (4/17)
Native Sun News: Little Shell Tribe gets closer to recognition (4/16)
Native Sun News: Pine Ridge fighter prepares for next match (4/16)
Letter from Cobell attorneys on second settlement payment (4/16)
Cobell settlement administrator responds to payment delay (4/16)
Secretary Jewell to deliver commencement address at SIPI (4/16)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.