Tribal Public Health Broadcast
Weekly News, Funding, Resources, and Upcoming Events in Indian Country

December 10, 2020
President-elect Joe Biden Announces Key Members of Health Team

On December 8, 2020, President-elect Joe Biden announced key nominations and appointments of his health team, that includes Dr. Anthony Fauci who will continue his role as Chief Medical Adviser to the President on COVID-19. The team are leaders with deep experience in public health, government, and crisis management. 
  • Xavier Becerra, Secretary of Health and Human Services - Attorney General of California, long-time champion of expanding access to healthcare, and former Congressman who helped pass the Affordable Care Act.
  • Dr. Vivek Murthy, Surgeon General - A physician, research scientist, and former Vice Admiral in the Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. He currently serves as co-chair of the President-elect’s COVID-19 transition Advisory Board.
  • Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - An expert on virus testing, prevention, and treatment. She is the Chief of Infectious Diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital and a Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. 
  • Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, COVID-19 Equity Task Force Chair - An expert on health care disparities. She is the founding director of Yale’s Equity Research and Innovation Center and co-chair of the President-elect’s COVID-19 Transition Advisory Board. Dr. Nunez-Smith will advise the President-elect on a whole-of-government effort to reduce COVID-19 disparities in response, care, and treatment, including racial and ethnic disparities.
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases - The nation’s preeminent expert on infectious diseases. Dr. Fauci will remain an essential voice both in informing the public about health risks and safety measures and in helping the scientific community, the Biden-Harris administration, and local officials overcome the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Jeff Zients, Coordinator of the COVID-19 Response and Counselor to the President - An accomplished public servant, Mr. Zients will advise the president-elect on the implementation of the federal government’s COVID response, including managing safe and equitable vaccine distribution, the pandemic supply chain, and coordination across federal agencies and state and local governments.
  • Natalie Quillian, Deputy Coordinator of the COVID-19 Response - A national security expert and former White House and Pentagon senior advisor who played an instrumental role in coordinating the Obama-Biden administration’s interagency response to the opioid epidemic.

An Interview with Navajo Nation on COVID-19 Response

Esri's Chief Medical Officer Este Geraghty leads a roundtable discussion about COVID-19's impact on the Navajo Nation and how they're using geographic information system (GIS) to make a difference for their people. A recording of the roundtable discussion is available here.
Tribal Epidemiology Centers: Year 2 Report -Building Tribal Public Health Infrastructure in Indian Country

The Tribal Epidemiology Centers (TECs) have released their Year 2 Progress Report highlighting progress and achievements related to building public health infrastructure in Indian Country.

Tasked with improving the health and well-being of Tribal members, the TECs offer culturally competent approaches to collecting and disseminating data, improving surveillance, strengthening capacity, and assisting in disease prevention. To support the fulfillment of these activities, the TECs established a Tribal Epidemiology Centers Public Health Infrastructure (TECPHI) Program in 2017 to increase internal capacity and infrastructure needed to reduce chronic disease risk and disparities.

As a result of TECPHI efforts and activities, there has been a demonstrated improvement in capacity and infrastructure including workforce development, communication, technical assistance, sustainability, and partnership. Key findings from the Year 2 Progress Report include 441 new or expanded partnerships, 82 new staff members, more than 1,000 technical assistance requests being fulfilled, 93 grants being awarded, and 266 publications.

To learn more about the TECs year 2 progress, read more here.
National Influenza Vaccination Week
December 6-12, 2020

To raise awareness about the importance of continuing flu vaccination through the holiday season and beyond, the Department of Health and Human Service’s Office of Minority Health (OMH) is proud to support National Influenza Vaccination Week (December 6-12). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as many as 45 million people in the U.S. get sick from the flu each season. Flu vaccination is especially important for people from racial and ethnic minority groups, who are often less likely to be vaccinated against flu and more likely to be hospitalized with flu. During 2020-2021, getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. A flu vaccine this season can also help reduce the burden on our medical system and save medical resources for the care of COVID-19 patients. Read more here.
CDC’s Project Firstline Launches Inside Infection Control

What's the goal of infection control? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Project Firstline launches Inside Infection Control, a new video series featuring content every frontline healthcare worker should know. Videos are hosted by Dr. Abby Carlson, an infectious diseases doctor with experience on the frontlines of COVID-19 and a Project Firstline staffer. In the first episode, Dr. Carson breaks down why infection control matters, and how it can protect healthcare workers, their patients, and their communities. Follow @CDC Project Firstline on Facebook to make sure you never miss an episode. Watch the first episode here.
PHAB Pathways Webinar for Tribes

The Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB), in partnership with the National Indian Health Board (NIHB), hosted a webinar on December 8th, 2020 to discuss the future of public health accreditation recognition. The purpose of this webinar was to consider a new public health systems recognition product intended to facilitate performance improvement without requiring health departments to commit to the full accreditation process. The product is intended to recognize achievement of progress towards public health performance improvement. 55 participants attended this webinar and provided feedback on how a new product could best support Tribes on their path towards strengthening public health services.

If you are interested in providing additional feedback on this proposed product, please email Jessica Fisher at the Public Health Accreditation Board at

To learn more about Tribal public health accreditation, visit NIHB’s Strengthening Tribal Public Health Systems Website here.
To learn more about public health accreditation overall, visit PHAB here.
National COVID-19 Resiliency Network

This year, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Minority Health (OMH) announced a partnership with the Morehouse School of Medicine to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 in racial and ethnic minority and vulnerable communities. Through this cooperative agreement, the Morehouse School of Medicine launched the National COVID-19 Resiliency Network (NCRN), which will share important messages and linkages to healthcare and social services in communities across the nation and areas hardest hit by the pandemic. The NRCN will focus on identifying and engaging disproportionately impacted communities, nurture existing and develop new partnerships, disseminate culturally and linguistically appropriate information, leverage technology to connect communities to resources, monitor and evaluate outcomes, and apply broad and comprehensive dissemination methods. Read more here.
Funding & Opportunities
Project Firstline- Tribal Infection Prevention and Control

The National Indian Health Board (NIHB) has partnered with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Project Firstline — a comprehensive infection control program designed to help prevent the spread of infectious diseases in U.S. healthcare settings. With Project Firstline funding, NIHB will implement a multi-pronged approach to providing infection prevention and control (IPC) training and technical assistance to Tribal health officials and Tribal health systems. To help guide the development of the training NIHB is creating a steering committee. The steering committee will assist with reviewing and advising on program materials and developing and implementing the infection control project. In addition to the steering committee, NIHB is offering a mentorship program and scholarships to those interested in completing online IPC courses and/or completing the Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology (CBIC) certification. Anyone interested in applying for the Steering Committee, mentorship program or scholarship, please contact Carmen Sanders at
WITH Foundation Grant Cycle Open for Bolstering Healthcare for Adults With Developmental Disabilities
Letters of interests due tomorrow, Friday, December 11, 2020

The WITH Foundation's grant cycle is now open to fund U.S. nonprofit organizations seeking to improve the delivery of healthcare to adults with developmental disabilities. Programs must address at least one of the specified areas of support to be considered for funding. Online letters of interest must be submitted by December 11, 2020; invited proposals will be due February 3, 2021. Read more here.
Home Depot Foundation: Veteran Housing Grants Program
Applications due Friday, December 18, 2020

The Home Depot Foundation: Veteran Housing Grants program will award funding to nonprofit organizations throughout the US and Puerto Rico for the new construction or rehabilitation of permanent supportive housing for veterans. Nonprofit organizations that have been in existence at least five years and have a current operating budget of at least $300,000 are eligible to apply. Grants ranging from $100,000 to $500,000 are available for the physical construction or repair of housing for veterans. Requests are reviewed three times per year; the upcoming application deadlines are December 18, 2020, and March 26 and July 9, 2021. Read more here.
FEMA Seeks Feedback on Emergency Operations Center Documents
Comments due by Tuesday, January 5, 2020 at 5:00 PM EST

The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) National Integration Center is seeking public feedback on two Emergency Operations Center (EOC) toolkit documents. The two EOC toolkit documents, “EOC How To Quick Reference Guide” and “EOC References and Tools,” are a collection of guidance and best practices for emergency management, specifically EOC communities. The National Integration Center is hosting a series of three, 60-minute webinars to discuss the two EOC toolkit documents and answer related questions. All stakeholder webinars are open to the whole community. Advance registration is required due to space limitations.

Each webinar will cover the same information.

FEMA Seeks Feedback on Comprehensive Preparedness Guide 101
Comments due by close of business Monday, January 25, 2021

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) seeks feedback on the updated “Comprehensive Preparedness Guide (CPG) 101: Developing and Maintaining Emergency Operations Plans.” This document provides guidance on developing emergency operations plans and promotes a common understanding of the fundamentals of community-based, risk-informed planning and decision making to help planners examine a threat or hazard and produce integrated, coordinated, and synchronized plans. FEMA will host a series of 60-minute webinar sessions to discuss changes to the updated CPG 101 and gather feedback from whole community partners. The sessions will include facilitated discussions with stakeholders to help improve the existing draft. A line numbered version of the CPG 101 is available to allow individuals to provide comments on specific areas within the document. The comment matrix can be used to capture any recommendations. Email feedback or any questions to

Webinar sessions:
The National Indian Health Board is Hiring!

The National Indian Health Board (NIHB) is seeking qualified candidates for the following open positions in the Public Health Policy and Programs Department based in Washington, DC:

  • Public Health Project Coordinator (Emergency Preparedness)
  • Public Health Project Coordinator (Aging)
  • Public Health Program Coordinator (PHICCS)
  • Public Health Project Coordinator (Environmental Health)
  • Public Health Project Associate (Behavioral Health)

Job descriptions are available at
Tribal HIV Initiative Prevention Toolkits

As Indian Country, and the entire world, is battling the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to remember that the HIV epidemic has been ravaging communities since the early 1980s. While advancements bring us closer every day to a cure or vaccine for HIV, we are still heavily reliant upon innovative community-driven and biomedical prevention strategies to hold this epidemic at bay. The National Indian Health Board (NIHB), in partnership with the Indian Health Service, JSI Research & Training, and Cardea Services, is very happy to have launched two new e-learning courses on December 1, 2020, World AIDS Day. These courses can help Tribal communities and health systems serving American Indian and Alaska Native communities build their capacity to utilize social media as a programmatic strategy to drive behavior change, and how to increase the uptake of Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) as a primary biomedical preventative strategy. These courses are designed to be taken wherever and whenever it is convenient for the users; they are self-paced and easy to complete. There are continuing education credits offered for the PrEP course, as well.

  • Advancing the Uptake and Use of PrEP in Indian Country: This course is made up of four different modules, and is designed to familiarize the learner with the basics of Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), explore barriers and potential solutions to the uptake of PrEP, and share strategies for incorporating PrEP into Tribal communities and existing clinical and community-based practices.
  • Developing a Social Media Strategy to Combat the HIV Epidemic in Indian Country: This eLearning course is comprised of six different modules and is designed to showcase best practices and practical tips for developing an effective and impactful social media strategy for HIV prevention for your community.

Both of these courses were funded through a cooperative agreement with the Indian Health Service (National Indian Health Outreach and Education II: HIV/AIDS, U252IHS0013-03-03) with resources from the Minority HIV/AIDS Fund.
Tribal Alerting via Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) 

The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) office hosted a webinar on Tribal Nations and IPAWS. IPAWS is a national system for local alerting that enables public safety officials the capability to deliver a single alert simultaneously through multiple communication devices, reaching as many people as possible to save lives and protect property. For additional information, check out the IPAWS Fact Sheet on How Tribal Governments Can Sign Up for Public Alerts and Warnings. Tribal governments interested in becoming an IPAWS Alerting Authority can also contact Harland Cleveland at about the Navajo Nation's experiences with public alerting. A webinar recording is available for download here.
New! COVID-19 Resources:

  • National Indian Health Board
  • Webinar: Prevention Strategies for Youth During COVID-19 Pandemic recording and slides.
  • Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) TRACIE
  • Emergency Responder Self-Care Plan: Behavioral Health PPE. Read more here.
  • Food and Drug Administration
  • The Path for a COVID-19 Vaccine from Research to Emergency Use Authorization. Read more here.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
  • What’s the difference between quarantine and isolation? Video available here.
  • COVID-19: Questions and Answers, November 20, 2020. Video available here.
  • Frequently Asked Questions: Ventilation FAQ
  •  COVID-19 Science Update. Read more here.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Clinician Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA)
  • Leveraging Existing Resources to Meet the Challenges Faced by People Who Use Drugs or Who Have Substance Use Disorders During the COVID-19 Pandemic. Recording available here.
NIHB COVID-19 Contact
The National Indian Health Board is committed to serving Tribal Nations in response to the coronavirus outbreak. Visit our COVID-19 Tribal Resource Center for more information and resources.
NIHB Webinar: The Climate and Health Learning Community Presents: Logic Models 101
Today! Thursday, December 10, 2020 from 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM EST

Do you have a headache just from reading the phrase “Logic Models”? If yes, we are here to help! Please join the National Indian Health Board (NIHB) for a climate learning community webinar: Logic Models 101. This virtual webinar will provide an in-depth look at how to develop logic models as they apply to American Indian and Alaska Native Health and Climate Change. Register here.
Operation Lady Justice Briefing Call
Today! Thursday, December 10, 2020 at 5:00 PM EST

The White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs (IGA) is hosting a briefing call with Senior Administration Officials for an update on Operation Lady Justice, including a report from the Presidential Task Force on Missing and Murdered American Indians and Alaska Native's report that is available here. Read more here.
Climate Change and Health Equity: Tribal Challenges and Actions
Tuesday, December 15, 2020 at 2:00 PM – 3:15 PM EST

The Tribal Public and Environmental Health Think Tank, in partnership with the American Public Health Association (APHA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Center for Environmental Health, is hosting a conversation on climate and health in Tribal communities. Presenters will:
  • Identify how changes in the climate and impacted the health and way of life of Tribes;
  • Discuss the importance of climate and health initiatives to mitigate inequity and how Tribal governments and Tribal-serving organizations can address climate justice; and
  • Present Tribal strategies and frameworks to address climate and health challenges that also reduce future health disparities and celebrate Tribal ways of life and traditional, cultural practices.

Tribal Nations Health Summit: 2021 White House Transition
Wednesday, December 16, 2020 at 1:00 PM – 6:00 PM EST
The National Indian Health Board NIHB) humbly invites Tribes to join a virtual Tribal Nations Health Summit on Wednesday, December 16, 2020 to identify the consensus requests for the Biden-Harris Administration.
Through advocacy and events, NIHB ensures that the unified voice of all federally-recognized Tribes is heard at all levels of decision-making – in the Congress, at the White House, and at the federal agency level. At this time of presidential transition, it is more important than ever to be ready to engage with the new Administration and federal agency leaders charged with interpreting and implementing legislation that will impact the health of Tribal people. Register here.