In the Spotlight‎ > ‎

February 23 – AI/AN Caucus Launches Its First Webinar on Tribal Epidemiology Centers

posted Feb 17, 2015, 11:56 AM by Tech Support   [ updated Feb 27, 2017, 12:57 PM ]
On February 23, 2015, the American Indian/Alaska Native Health Equity Caucus invites you to join the webinar Tribal Epidemiology Centers: Addressing American Indian and Alaska Native Health Disparities.The full abstract and speaker biographies of the webinar can be found below. Please visit here to register.


This webinar will highlight three Tribal Epidemiology Centers who work to address health disparities for American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs). With 566 federally recognized tribes and an estimated 5.2 million AI/ANs living in the United States, this population continues to experience some of the greatest health disparities in the U.S. The collective burden of historical trauma, toxic stress, and adverse childhood experiences impacts social determinants of health such as access to educational and job opportunities. For example, life expectancy for AI/ANs is lower than the average U.S life expectancy by 5 years. 

Tribal Epidemiology Centers have become trusted partners to tribal governments, AI/AN communities and health organizations, and state health departments. There are currently eleven Regional Tribal Epidemiology Centers and one National Urban Indian Health Institute serving tribes and urban Indian health programs. Part of the Tribal Epidemiology Centers mission is to improve the health status of AI/ANs by identification and understanding of health risks and inequities, strengthening public health capacity, and assisting in disease prevention and control. The Tribal Epidemiology Centers work in a variety of domains including environmental health, oral health, intimate partner/sexual violence, diabetes, behavioral health, and maternal and child health. Tribal Epidemiology Centers are well-positioned to play a critical role in providing tribes with the data required to define the pertinent issues and the opportunities to improve the health and well-being of tribal communities.

This webinar will feature presentations from three of the Tribal Epidemiology Centers. In this webinar, participants will learn about:
  • The mission and purpose of Tribal Epidemiology Centers 
  • Programs of the Tribal Epidemiology Centers and how they are funded 
  • Types of data that are available including data gathered on social determinants of health 
  • Challenges in addressing health disparities for AI/ANs Strategies for how Regional Health Equity Councils (RHECs) and individual RHEC members can better address 

Speaker Biographies

Jennifer Giroux, Administrator, Northern Plains Tribal Epidemiology Center 
Dr. Giroux serves as a medical epidemiologist for the Great Plains Tribes and the Great Plains Area Indian Health Service (GPIHS). In this role, she leads the management of outbreaks for 17 Tribes and 1 service area in the four-state region of South Dakota, North Dakota, Nebraska, and Iowa. Dr. Giroux also serves as the Administrator for the Northern Plains Tribal Epidemiology Center (NPTEC). In this capacity, she provides public health and epidemiology technical assistance and leadership to Tribes, to the Great Plains Tribal Chairmen’s Health Board (GPTCHB, where NPTEC is housed), to state health departments, and to other organizations, with a focus on building collaborations to meet the public health needs of NPTEC’s partner Tribes. Dr. Giroux is a member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe. She completed her undergraduate degree at Montana State University and graduated with her MD from the Indians Into Medicine (INMED) Program at the University of South Dakota. She completed her Master of Public Health in Epidemiology at the University of Minnesota. 

P.J. Beaudry, Administrative Coordinator, Northern Plains Tribal Epidemiology Center 
Mr. Beaudry completed his undergraduate degree at Boston University with a BA in Health Science. From there, he completed his MPH at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health with a concentration in Health and Human Rights. Hired by Great Plains Tribal Chairmen’s Health Board (GPTCHB), he first worked as the CBA/HIV Project Manager before moving on to a position with the Northern Plains Tribal Epidemiology Center (NPTEC) at GPTCHB. Currently he serves as NPTEC’s Administrative Coordinator and as the Principal Investigator and Program Director for GPTCHB’s Sexually Transmitted Infections and Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program. In addition to his MPH, Mr. Beaudry has been certified in Public Health by the National Board of Public Health Examiners. 

Christy Duke, Senior Epidemiologist, United South and Eastern Tribes Epidemiology Center 
Ms. Duke, MPH, graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas with a B.A. in Political Science and History in 1995. She also did a year abroad program at the American University in Cairo. She returned to Texas in 1998 to pursue a medical degree and while preparing to apply to medical school, Christy took an Epidemiology course and changed her career path. In December 2001, Ms. Duke graduated from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine with an MPH in Epidemiology. 

Jamie Ritchey, Tribal Epidemiology Director, Inter Tribal Council of Arizona 
Dr. Ritchey has over ten years of practical public health experience as an epidemiologist leading data analyses to develop public health reports and peer-reviewed publications. She serves as the Tribal Epidemiology Director with the Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc. and she is an adjunct professor at the University of Arizona's Mel & Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health.