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Sault Tribe receives $2.5M national grant

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Last Updated on Friday, 07 October 2011

$103 million in grants given to 61 states and communities reaching 120 million Americans

SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. - The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians is one of 61 communities selected to receive funding in order to address Tobacco Free Living, Active and Healthy Living, and Increased use of High Impact Quality Clinical Preventative Services in seven Upper Peninsula counties that serve as the tribe’s service area. This was announced today by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The tribe’s community health department will receive $2.5 million or $500,000 annually for five years.

HHS awarded approximately $103 million in Community Transformation Grants (CTG) to 61 states and communities, reaching more than 120 million Americans. The CTGs will support the planning and implementation of state and community projects proven to reduce chronic diseases—such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and cancer. This funding is available under the Affordable Care Act to improve health in states and communities and control health care spending.

“We are honored and thrilled to be given this opportunity to impact the health of our tribal members and all who live within our tribe’s service area,” said Marilyn Hillman, RN, MPH Sault Tribe Community Health Manager. The tribe’s service area includes the counties of Chippewa, Mackinac, Schoolcraft, Delta, Marquette, Alger and Luce.

Over 20 percent of grant funds will be directed to rural and frontier areas. The grants are expected to run for five years, with projects expanding their scope and reach over time as resources permit.

According to Hillman, the Sault Tribe’s CTG project will include working with partner communities and schools to make environmental, programmatic, and infrastructure changes that will lead to healthier communities.  

“The cost of managing chronic diseases for the tribe continues to grow, and the tribal population has a disproportionate incidence of chronic disease” said Hillman. “In the United States, chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes are the leading causes of death, disability, and health care costs, accounting for 70 percent of all deaths each year and 75 percent of all medical costs. Although chronic diseases are among the most common and costly health problems in the country, they are also among the most preventable.”

Nationwide, the CTGs will focus on three priority areas: tobacco-free living; active living and healthy eating; and evidence-based quality clinical and other preventive services, specifically prevention and control of high blood pressure and high cholesterol. There are two types of grants for states and communities: capacity building and implementation.

  • 35 grantees will implement evidence-based and practice-based programs to achieve changes by running programs designed to help improve health and wellness. For these grants, funding amounts range from $500,000 to $10 million.

  • 26 grantees will work to build capacity to implement changes by laying a solid foundation for community prevention efforts to ensure long-term success. Funding amounts range from $147,000 to $500,000 depending on population size and scope of project.

To learn more about Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians’ prevention and wellness projects, visit healthysaulttribe.net. To learn more about Community Transformation Grants, visit

www.cdc.gov/communitytransformation.

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