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Posted: January 12, 2021

COVID-19 Indian Country IHS

The Indian Health Service has updated its coronavirus data, showing results as of January 10, 2021.

According to the data, 159,500 tests have returned positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. That represents an increase of nearly 0.4 percent from the 158,891 cases previously reported by the IHS.

Altogether, 1,762,844 coronavirus tests have been administered within the IHS through January 10, the data shows. That marks an increase of 0.2 percent from the day prior.

Since mid-October of 2020, the IHS has been providing additional information about the spread of the coronavirus within the system. The cumulative percent positive column shows the historical COVID-19 infection rate, meaning the number of tests that have returned positive since the onset of the pandemic.

Based on the cumulative percent positive, the highest rates have been seen in the Navajo Area (16.6 percent), the Phoenix Area (14.3 percent) and the Oklahoma City Area (13.1 percent). The first two regions include the state of Arizona, indicating a disproportionate toll of COVID-19 in the state.

The 7-day rolling average positivity column offers a more contemporary look at the impact of the coronavirus. The data shows where COVID-19 cases have been increasing recently.

Based on the 7-day rolling average positivity, four regions have seen dramatic increases in COVID-19 cases. They are: the Oklahoma City Area (22.9 percent), the Phoenix Area (20.8 percent), the California Area (20.1 percent) and the Navajo Area (19.9 percent). Two of the four regions include the state of Arizona.

Overall, 9.8 percent of IHS tests have been positive since the onset of the pandemic, the data shows. Meanwhile, the 7-day average has dropped after increasing steadily during the holiday season. It now stands at 15.9 percent.

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.

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 January 10, 2021.

IHS Area
positive *
7-day rolling
positivity *
Alaska 436,333 9,767 364,928 2.6% 3.3%
Albuquerque 79,099 6,983 53,996 11.5% 17.8%
Bemidji 118,837 8,908 106,737 7.7% 9.1%
Billings 85,994 6,971 75,467 8.5% 11.0%
California 55,323 5,233 46,950 10.0% 20.1%
Great Plains 123,190 13,205 109,421 10.8% 15.2%
Nashville 56,288 4,615 50,766 8.3% 10.2%
Navajo 202,170 27,427 137,782 16.6% 19.9%
Oklahoma City 374,258 48,196 320,573 13.1% 22.9%
Phoenix 142,197 20,255 120,912 14.3% 20.8%
Portland 68,315 5,717 61,844 8.5% 10.3%
Tucson 20,840 2,223 18,370 10.8% 17.3%
TOTAL 1,762,844 159,500 1,467,746 9.8% 15.9%

* Cumulative percent positive and 7-day rolling average positivity are updated three days per week.

Source: Indian Health Service (

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