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Health Board Joins Newly Formed AIMES Alliance

RAPID CITY –The American Indian Medical Education Strategies (AIMES) Alliance, a collaborative effort comprising 24 urban and rural tribal organizations, medical institutions, and advocacy groups, has been established to combat the pervasive physician shortages experienced in tribal communities.

Spearheaded by Dr. Donald Warne, the alliance advocates for federal policies that support graduate medical education (GME) partnerships in urban and rural Tribal medical facilities.

A Graduate Medical Education partnership typically refers to a collaboration between medical institutions, such as teaching hospitals or medical schools, and other entities, such as community hospitals or health systems, to provide training and education for medical graduates pursuing further specialization in various fields of medicine.

These partnerships are essential for developing physicians who have completed medical school and are seeking to advance their training in a specific area of medicine, such as surgery, internal medicine, pediatrics, etc. The partnerships often involve sharing resources, expertise, and facilities to ensure comprehensive training and exposure to various clinical settings.

Dr. Warne underscores the pressing need to bolster staffing levels at tribal health facilities, emphasizing the imperative for collective action to tackle health disparities prevalent in these communities. The initiative seeks to cultivate innovative partnerships in medical education specifically tailored to the needs of Indigenous communities, with a central focus on ameliorating healthcare access and outcomes.

Notably, the Great Plains Tribal Leaders’ Health Board stands as a pivotal founding member of AIMES, exemplifying its steadfast commitment to enhancing healthcare access and outcomes for Indigenous populations through collaborative endeavors and policy advocacy. Under the management of Leavitt Partners, the alliance serves as a unified voice, advocating for policy measures that expand opportunities for medical education and training within Indian Country.

Establishing the AIMES Alliance marks a significant step forward in addressing the systemic challenges tribal communities face in accessing adequate healthcare. Through concerted advocacy efforts and strategic partnerships, AIMES endeavors to pave the way for sustainable solutions that alleviate physician shortages and promote equitable healthcare access and outcomes for all Indigenous populations.