Indian Health Care Improvement Act survives along with Affordable Care Act

Today’s Supreme Court opinion upholding the constitutionality of the individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act also upholds the Indian Health Care Improvement Act (“IHCIA”). IHCIA, which is part of the Affordable Care Act, provides broad support and funding for Indian health programs and for tribal members.

Indian health care advocates were concerned that the IHCIA would fall along with the Affordable Care Act if the Supreme Court struck it down, and had argued in amicus briefs that the court should sever and preserve the IHCIA language if it decided to strike the individual mandate. Because the court upheld the greater law, it did not have to rule on severability issues.

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