Northern Arapaho Business Council defends Tribal Sovereignty; takes Federal Government to U.S. Supreme Court


    The Northern Arapaho Tribe is among multiple tribes that contract with the federal government in order to administer their own health care programs. The federal Indian Health Service (IHS) provides funding for these programs, including to cover costs necessary to administer the program. The Northern Arapaho Tribe filed suit against the federal government after IHS rejected the Tribe’s 2016-17 reimbursement claims for costs associated with health care expenditures using funds obtained from third-party insurers, including Medicare, Medicaid and private insurers. In March 2023, a 10th Circuit Court of Appeals panel ruled in the Northern Arapaho Tribe’s favor.

    Statement from the Northern Arapaho Business Council:


    “The Northern Arapaho Business Council supports review by the U.S. Supreme Court of this important issue, which has significant implications for our Tribe and numerous others that administer their own health care programs via a contract with the federal Indian Health Service. We will file a brief with the court and look forward to the resolution of the case.

    “We are hopeful and confident the High Court will determine, as the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals did, that tribes are entitled to reimbursement for all health care-related expenses associated with program administration. To find otherwise would mean the loss of millions of dollars, requiring cuts to Northern Arapaho programs and services that are already stretched in meeting the urgent needs of Members.

    “The NABC will never back down when it comes to fighting for the Arapaho people and defending the sovereignty of our Tribe.”


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