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Journal of Environmental and Public Health
Volume 2014, Article ID 321604, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/321604
Review Article

Blood Politics, Ethnic Identity, and Racial Misclassification among American Indians and Alaska Natives

1University of New Mexico College of Nursing, MSC 09 5350, 1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131, USA
2Psychosocial & Community Health, University of Washington School of Nursing, P.O. Box 357263, Seattle, WA 98195-7263, USA
3San Francisco School of Nursing, 2 Koret Way, Room N411Y, P.O. Box 0606, San Francisco, CA 94143, USA
4Native American Research and Training Center, Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of Arizona, 1642 E. Helen, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA

Received 30 July 2013; Revised 17 December 2013; Accepted 18 December 2013; Published 10 February 2014

Academic Editor: David Vlahov

Copyright © 2014 Emily A. Haozous et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Misclassification of race in medical and mortality records has long been documented as an issue in American Indian/Alaska Native data. Yet, little has been shared in a cohesive narrative which outlines why misclassification of American Indian/Alaska Native identity occurs. The purpose of this paper is to provide a summary of the current state of the science in racial misclassification among American Indians and Alaska Natives. We also provide a historical context on the importance of this problem and describe the ongoing political processes that both affect racial misclassification and contribute to the context of American Indian and Alaska Native identity.