About Us – Our Mission & History

The mission of the UIHI is to support the health and well-being of urban Indian communities through information, scientific inquiry and technology.

The UIHI was established as a Division of the Seattle Indian Health Board, a community health center for urban American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs). The UIHI is one of 12 tribal epidemiology centers (TECs) funded by the Indian Health Service (IHS). While the other 11 TECs work with tribes regionally, the UIHI focuses on the nationwide urban AI/AN population. As a crucial component of the health care resources for all AI/ANs, tribal epidemiology centers are responsible for:

  • Managing public health information systems
  • Investigating diseases of concern
  • Managing disease prevention and control programs
  • Communicating vital health information and resources
  • Responding to public health emergencies
  • Coordinating these activities with other public health authorities

The UIHI assists Urban Indian Health Organizations (UIHOs), which are private, non-profit, corporations that serve AI/AN people in select cities with a range of health and social services, from outreach and referral to full ambulatory care. UIHOs are a network of 33 independent health agencies funded in part under Subtitle IV of the Indian Health Care Improvement Act (formerly Title V) and receive limited grants and contracts from the federal Indian Health Service (IHS). UIHOs are located in 19 states supporting individuals in approximately 100 U.S. counties, in which over 1.2 million AI/ANs reside, according to the 2010 U.S. Census. UIHOs provide traditional health care services, cultural activities and a culturally-appropriate place for urban AI/ANs to receive health care. UIHI staff work on multiple, ongoing research projects to benefit urban American Indian/Alaska Natives.

Need more information? See our How to Request Data webpage.

Contact us for more information or visit the Get Involved webpage to learn about about employment, volunteering and interning at the UIHI.

UIHI Mission

UIHI Mission

This document describes the mission of the Urban Indian Health Institute (UIHI), as well as who we are and who we serve. (Sept 2015)Download»

UIHI Services and Assistance

UIHI Services and Assistance

Find out more about the services and assistance the UIHI provides to support those who serve the urban American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) population. (March 2015)Download»

Health Disparities in UIHO Service Areas

Health Disparities in UIHO Service Areas

An overview of health disparities in UIHO service areas, including what are Urban Indian Health Organizations, and who are Urban Indians. (March 2015)Download»


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