Native Veterans comprise unique populations within the VeteransAdministration (VA) system of care and represent a proud tradition of military service. Limited healthcare data available on rural Native veterans indicate significant disparities in access to care and health status compared with other populations. This article provides an assessment of current challenges, barriers, and issues related to addressing the healthcare needs of rural Native veterans and offers recommendations to improve healthcare for this special population. To meet the needs of rural Native veterans it will be important to: conduct needs assessments to gather important health data about rural Native veterans; develop a clearinghouse of information on and for rural Native veterans and disseminate this information widely; develop strategies to enhance transportation policies and provisions; expand the use of technology and outreach; work toward increasing cultural competence among VA employees; and improve the availability of traditional healing services.

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