Indianz.Com > COVID-19 > Navajo Nation Council (Arizona, New Mexico, Utah)
Posted: December 17, 2020
December 16, 2020

Navajo Nation: Covid-19 positive cases increase by 160, Council begins addressing critical funding needs after December 30

WINDOW ROCK, Arizona— The Navajo Nation’s update to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic situation report from the Health Command Operations Center (HCOC) for December 16, 2020 included data for testing, results, recoveries and mortalities related to Covid-19 in and around the NavajoNation.

160 new confirmed cases of Covid-19 were reported on Wednesday bringing the total confirmed positive cases on the Navajo Nation to 20,095. The total number of mortalities related to Covid-19 increased by 4 within the 24-hour period, a total of 731 reported deaths since March. The report included 10,779 recovered cases. A total 186,724 Covid-19 tests have been completed with 153,337 tests that were returned with negative results.

“The Navajo Nation Council expresses appreciation to our health care professionals, front line workers and first responders as we look to continue immediate support for coronavirus services and projects. It is our responsibility, as Navajo leadership, to provide certainty during critical transition periods, like the one we are in now. Following the CDC’s guidelines for protecting against the spread of the virus that causes Covid-19 is the best way we can help each other be safer from the dangers of uncontrolled spread. Mask up, sanitize and wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, practice social distancing and stay away from gatherings with people outside your homestead. Our health care professionals have told us 80 to 90 percent of our population is still susceptible to contracting Covid-19, and we must stay vigilant as the vaccine becomes more widely available in the coming months,” said Speaker Seth Damon.

On Wednesday, the Health, Education and Human Services Committee began discussing new legislation to extend Navajo Department of Health and Health Command Operations Center funding beyond the December 30 deadline for CARES Act funds. That legislation, No. 0311-20, proposes an allocation of $17,420,482 to support continuing operations and financial commitments relating to the Navajo Nation’s Covid-19 response activities into 2021. The legislation is sponsored by Council Delegate Carl Roessel Slater and co-sponsored by Speaker Seth Damon and is currently open for public comment before HEHSC meets again to act on it.

Members of the Navajo Nation Council also met Wednesday to discuss the Permanent Trust Fund 5 Year Expenditure Plan and projects supported by the Síhásin Fund. The Council is expected to consider legislation soon to reallocate unspent or lapsed funding from the Navajo Nation’s own trust funds for projects that support infrastructure, water and related projects in local communities.

The Resources and Development Committee also met via teleconference on Wednesday to discuss and act on legislation relating to chapter and powerline projects, in addition to proposed Legislation No. 0309-20, which would provide expanded support for local heavy equipment purchases and more emergency water projects.

On Thursday, the Naabik’íyáti’ Committee will meet via telecommunication to consider legislation relating to US Department of the Interior contracts for the Department of Family Services Program, Navajo Family Assistance Services and the Navajo Treatment Center for Children and Their Families Program.

Legislation is accessible online at:

More Data
Navajo Nation Covid-19 Cases by Service Unit:
Chinle Service Unit: 3,886
Gallup Service Unit: 3,303
Shiprock Service Unit: 3,340
Crownpoint Service Unit: 2,138
Ft. Defiance Service Unit: 2,142
Kayenta Service Unit: 1,968
Tuba City Service Unit: 2,084
Winslow Service Unit: 1,213
Bordertowns: 5,583


51 chapters reported positive cases with the communities of heightened concern being: Shiprock (18), Aneth (16), Tohajiilee (15), Chinle (8), Kayenta (8), Oljato (7), Pinon (6), Tsaile-Wheatfields (6), Crownpoint (5) and Lukachugai (5).

The NDOH and the Navajo Epidemiology Center provided the updated Covid-19 figures in coordination with tribally-controlled Public Law 19-638 healthcare facilities and the Navajo Area Indian Health Service. More information, including Covid-19 testing locations, can be found on the Navajo Nation’s Covid-19 website at:

The Office of Environmental Health and Protection, with the concurrence of the Navajo Department of Health (NDOH) and the HCOC, issued Public Health Emergency Order No. 2020-031. The order continues the Stay at Home (Shelter in Place) Lockdown Order for three weeks, including full 57-hour weekend lockdowns.

The HCOC General Hotline can be reached at (928) 871-7014. Inquiries and requests may be sent to The HCOC hours of operation are Monday-Friday from 8am to 5pm, Saturday from 8am to 12pm and Sunday on standby status.

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