Ponca Tribe Drops Lawsuit

Ponca Tribe Drops Lawsuit

ICTMN Staff
9/2/11

The Ponca Tribe of Nebraska announced August 24 that it was dropping a lawsuit it recently filed against the state of Nebraska over who had authority to hire doctors for the tribe.

On August 16 the Nebraska Department of Human Services (DHHS)/ Division of Public Health and the State Attorney General acknowledged they do not have jurisdiction over licensing credentials or other qualifications of the Ponca Tribes medical director.

Rosa M. Huguet, M.D., hired as the tribe’s medical director and practicing physician was licensed in Puerto Rico, became the head of the tribes health care in July of 2010.

According to an Associated Press article she was hired after the national health care overhaul measure was adopted. Before, tribal doctors had to be licensed within the state they were practicing, but the new law allows tribal doctors to be licensed in any of the 50 states, the District of Columbia or a U.S. territory.

The decision by the state was that the Tribe’s Fred LeRoy Health & Wellness Center in Omaha, falls under federal jurisdiction and not the state and the matter is considered closed by the Board of Medicine and Surgery and the Nebraska AG.

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