The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) is an agency of the federal government of the United States within the U.S. Department of the Interior. It is responsible for the administration and management of of land held in trust by the United States for Native Americans in the United States, Native American Tribes and Alaska Natives. The Bureau of Indian Affairs is one of two bureaus under the jurisdiction of the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs: the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Bureau of Indian Education, which provides education services to approximately 48,000 Native Americans. The BIA’s responsibilities once included providing health care to American Indians and Alaska Natives. In 1954 that function was legislatively transferred to the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, now known as the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, where it has remained to this day as the Indian Health Service.

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