AHCJ and NAJA co-host “Health Equity: Aging and Health Care Disparities in Indigenous Communities” webinar June 2

Press Release

May 16, 2022

NAJA roundtable is the third in collaborative series focused on health equity in Indian Country

The Native American Journalists Association (NAJA) and the Association of Health Care Journalists (AHCJ) will co-host the one-hour “Health Equity: Aging and Health Care Disparities in Indigenous Communities” webinar via Zoom on Thursday, June 2 at 12 p.m., CT.

Liz Seegert, AHCJ’s core topic leader on aging, and Travis Snell (Cherokee), former Cherokee Phoenix assistant editor, will lead the discussion. Katherine Reed, AHCJ’s interim executive director and director of education and content, will moderate the Q&A.

Multiple factors affect how well people age in the United States. Social determinants of health, cultural background, and health equity are among the prime influences on whether someone lives a long, healthy life, or suffers with chronic, debilitating illnesses that may significantly impact longevity.

Combatting these issues and managing diseases is challenging for many elders. However, Indigenous people face unique challenges, including historic disparities and the Indian Health Service’s failure to meet its trust responsibility to care for this population due to funding issues.

Like most elders throughout the U.S., Indigenous elders want to age with dignity and want state and federal policies that support affordable housing and livable communities in both urban and underserved rural areas.

The Administration for Community Living noted that this group often struggles more than other populations with issues of access, affordability, and lack of culturally appropriate information about healthy aging.

Presenters will examine the problems in further detail, including the information gap and discuss how journalists can report on these issues while avoiding tropes and stereotypes in the spirit of the NAJA Bingo Card.

Attendees can register for the webinar here. After registering, attendees will receive a confirmation email with information about how to join.


  • Liz Seegert (@lseegert), is an independent health journalist and AHCJ’s core topic leader for aging. Her work has appeared in numerous national and local media outlets, including TIME Health, NextAvenue.org, American Journal of Nursing, and Consumer Reports.
  • Travis Snell (Cherokee Nation) worked 21 years at the Cherokee Phoenix, the Cherokee Nation’s independent newspaper, before resigning in 2021 to move to Europe. He spent six years as a reporter and 15 years as assistant editor. He now works as a freelance journalist.

NAJA recognizes that media professionals are confronted with unique challenges when covering issues affecting Indigenous people and communities. The NAJA “Covering Indian Country” series aims to examine the challenges and best practices for reporting these stories. This webinar is the last in a three-part NAJA and AHCJ collaborative series focused on health equity in Indian Country sponsored by the Commonwealth Fund.

The “Covering Indian Country” series is supported by the following organizations:

  • Democracy Fund
  • Ford Foundation
  • Gannett Foundation
  • Google News Initiative
  • The Commonwealth Fund
  • The Society of Professional Journalists Foundation
  • Walton Family Foundation

An on-demand recording will be available via the NAJA website and YouTube channel.

About NAJA
The Native American Journalists Association serves more than 1,000 members, including media professionals working in tribal, freelance, independent and mainstream news outlets, as well as academia and students covering Indigenous communities and representing tribal nations from across North America.

About AHCJ
The Association of Health Care Journalists, Inc. is an independent, nonprofit organization of more than 1,400 members dedicated to advancing public understanding of health care issues. Its mission is to improve the quality, accuracy and visibility of health care reporting, writing and editing.


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