Indianz.Com > COVID-19 > Indian Health Service (Department of Health and Human Services)
Posted: July 21, 2020

The Indian Health Service has updated its coronavirus data, showing results as of July 19, 2020.

According to the data, 27,233 tests have returned positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. That represents an increase of nearly 1.4 percent from the 26,866 cases previously reported.

Altogether, 406,923 coronavirus tests have been administered through July 19, the data shows. That marks an increase of 1.4 percent from the day prior.

In both instances, the low growth rates can be attributed to lulls in data seen during weekends.

Overall, 6.7 percent of percent of IHS coronavirus tests have returned positive, according to the data. But the rate is far higher in the Phoenix Area, where 17.7 percent are positive.

Closely following is Navajo Area, which serves the largest reservation in the United States.  But even with 16.7 percent tests returning positive, the rate has held steady in the last several days following a slow but noticeable decline from the region with the highest rate.

The Nashville Area, which covers a wide area of Indian Country, including the South and Northeastern parts of the U.S., also continues to show a high positive rate of nearly 10.2 percent.

On the other end of the spectrum, aggressive efforts in the Alaska Area are turning up very few cases. Out of 77,860 tests administered in Alaska, only 0.46 percent have returned positive, the data shows.

The Alaska Area also outnumbers every other area — including Navajo —  in terms of tests administered. The Alaska region recently took over the top spot from the Oklahoma City Area .

The data, however, is incomplete. While 100 percent of facilities run directly by the IHS are reporting data, only 33 percent of tribally managed facilities and 44 percent of urban Indian organizations are doing the same, the agency has told Indianz.Com.

The agency also provided to Indianz.Com the service population for 2019: 2,562,290. Based on that figure, 15.8 percent of American Indians and Alaska Natives have been tested for the coronavirus since the IHS began reporting data in March.

The IHS user population, on the other hand, is a much smaller number. As of 2019, 1,662,834 American Indians and Alaska Natives have lived within a service delivery area and have received health care at an IHS or tribal facility during the previous three years.

Based on the user population, nearly 24.5 percent of Native Americans have been tested for the coronavirus since the IHS began reporting data in March.

COVID-19 Cases by IHS Area

Data are reported from IHS, tribal, and urban Indian organization facilities, though reporting by tribal and urban programs is voluntary. Data reflect cases reported to the IHS through 11:59 pm on July 19, 2020.

IHS Area Tested Positive Negative
Alaska 77,860 359 66,921
Albuquerque 28,446 1,402 18,077
Bemidji 22,320 548 19,928
Billings 32,750 580 24,534
California 6,033 325 4,632
Great Plains 31,584 1,327 28,695
Nashville 13,434 1,369 11,084
Navajo 57,946 9,694 43,159
Oklahoma City 76,359 2,944 69,328
Phoenix 39,936 7,082 33,703
Portland 15,744 1,191 13,697
Tucson 4,511 412 3,972
TOTAL 406,923 27,233 337,730

Source: (Indian Health Service)

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