Diabetes, alcoholism and obesity all disproportionately afflict Native Americans.
The reasons are many, including poverty and lack of education.
But a new $6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health will examine what works in Native American health care.
The grant will fund a new Center for American Indian Resilience.
Northern Arizona University Assistant Professor Priscilla Sanderson is co-director of the new center.
She says researchers want to learn how Native Americans can draw on their cultural traditions to stay healthy.