The Indian Health Service (IHS) and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has announced that 27 additional IHS and tribal hospitals are eligible for selection by health care providers in both their outpatient and inpatient settings under the National Health Service Corps program.

The 27 facilities include three South Dakota hospitals: Eagle Butte Indian Hospital, Pine Ridge Indian Hospital and Rosebud Indian Hospital.

The announcement provides recruitment opportunities at NHSC-approved outpatient care sites including health care facilities that provide ambulatory and primary health services in urban and rural communities with limited access to health care.

IHS Principal Deputy Director Mary L. Smith says recruiting and retaining qualified health care providers at rural hospitals and IHS facilities is a major challenge. She says the announcement puts IHS on par with critical access hospitals for the first time and expands the resources of the NHSC to tribally operated hospitals.

IHS Hospitals will become eligible sites for new NHSC awardees when the 2017 NHSC Loan Repayment Application and Program Guidance is released in early 2017. Information on eligibility and application deadlines is available here.