Indianz.Com > COVID-19 > Indian Health Service (Department of Health and Human Services)
Posted: August 1, 2020

The Indian Health Service has updated its coronavirus data, showing results as of July 30, 2020.

According to the data, 32,126 tests have returned positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. That represents an increase of about 1.1 percent from the 31,782 cases previously reported.

Altogether, 483,584 coronavirus tests have been administered through July 30, the data shows. That marks an increase of only about 1.8 percent from the day prior.

The low growth rates in positive cases and tests have reflected an emerging trend. Since July 21, there has been a slowdown in coronavirus activity within the IHS.

Overall, 6.5 percent of IHS coronavirus tests have returned positive, according to the data. But the rate is far higher in the Phoenix Area, where nearly 17.7 percent are positive.

Next is the Navajo Area, which serves the largest reservation in the United States.  But even with nearly 16 percent of 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 9.6 percent.

On the other end of the spectrum, aggressive efforts in the Alaska Area are turning up very few cases. Out of 96,309 tests administered in Alaska, only 0.58 percent have returned positive, the data shows.

The Alaska Area also outnumbers every other area — including Navajo —  in terms of tests administered. The Oklahoma City Area has fallen back to the second spot.

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, nearly 18.9 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 29.1 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 30, 2020.

IHS Area Tested Positive Negative
Alaska 96,309 561 80,687
Albuquerque 32,885 1,553 22,074
Bemidji 28,273 717 25,440
Billings 37,231 787 29,887
California 7,179 444 5,851
Great Plains 36,395 1,541 34,348
Nashville 15,732 1,513 13,196
Navajo 65,765 10,497 49,456
Oklahoma City 94,626 4,711 86,840
Phoenix 44,118 7,804 35,780
Portland 19,770 1,513 17,481
Tucson 5,301 485 4,707
TOTAL 483,584 32,126 405,747

Source: (Indian Health Service)

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