Indianz.Com > COVID-19 > Indian Health Service (Department of Health and Human Services)
Posted: July 28, 2020

The Indian Health Service has updated its coronavirus data, showing results as of July 26, 2020.

According to the data, 30,419 tests have returned positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. That represents an increase of nearly 1.9 percent from the 29,855 cases previously reported.

Altogether, 456,865 coronavirus tests have been administered through July 26, the data shows. That marks an increase of nearly 1.6 percent from the day prior.

The low growth in positive cases and tests are typical for lulls in data seen during weekends. But results from July 21, July 22, July 23, July 24, July 25 and July 26 have indicated a slowdown in coronavirus activity within the IHS.

Overall, nearly 6.7 percent of IHS coronavirus tests have returned positive, according to the data. But the rate is far higher in the Phoenix Area, where nearly 16.5 percent are positive.

Closely following is Navajo Area, which serves the largest reservation in the United States.  But even with nearly 16.4 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 almost 10 percent.

On the other end of the spectrum, aggressive efforts in the Alaska Area are turning up very few cases. Out of 86,634 tests administered in Alaska, only 0.52 percent have returned positive, the data shows.

The Alaska Area also outnumbers almost every other area — including Navajo —  in terms of tests administered. The Oklahoma City Area has once again reclaimed the number one spot within the IHS.

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, 17.8 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 27.5 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 26, 2020.

IHS Area Tested Positive Negative
Alaska 86,634 448 72,673
Albuquerque 31,547 1,484 20,729
Bemidji 25,249 618 22,739
Billings 36,277 715 28,521
California 6,539 369 5,098
Great Plains 34,751 1,475 32,392
Nashville 14,596 1,454 12,141
Navajo 63,201 10,341 47,274
Oklahoma City 89,194 4,028 81,632
Phoenix 46,410 7,671 38,220
Portland 17,501 1,365 15,349
Tucson 4,966 451 4,403
TOTAL 456,865 30,419 381,171

Source: https://www.ihs.gov/coronavirus/ (Indian Health Service)

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