Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

Native Americans take health care into their own hands

Native American tribes are turning their backs on government medical care to keep their communities from receiving inadequate treatment, but are quickly finding out it's a costly feat, the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: Some of the 24 hospitals overseen by the Indian Health Service are systemically failing, with one in the Great Plains responsible for patients' deaths and misdiagnoses, according to several federal investigations.

Health officials urge Americans to get flu shots before November

Photo of HHS Secretary Alex Azar smiling as he receives his flu shot
Alex Azar (center) receives his flu shot just beflore Redskins legend Mark Way during a press conference. Photo courtesy of NFID

Public health officials on Thursday urged Americans to get their seasonal flu vaccine early this year, in case the U.S. follows Australia's season in which the virus hit many people early.

Why it matters: While public health officials admit the vaccine is not 100% effective, there's growing research showing that the vaccine reduces the severe and sometimes deadly complications from the disease and can protect newborns if the mother receives the vaccine while pregnant.