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Posted: March 1, 2021

COVID-19 Indian Country IHS

The Indian Health Service has updated its coronavirus data, showing results as of February 27, 2021.

According to the data, 186,313 tests have returned positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. That represents an increase of less than 1 percent from the 186,266 cases previously reported by the IHS.

Altogether, 2,070,458 coronavirus tests have been administered within the IHS through February 27, the data shows. That marks an increase of less than 1 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 three areas. Two of them 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, three areas continue to see higher COVID-19 rates. They follow:

Overall, 9.7 percent of IHS tests have been positive since the onset of the pandemic, the data shows. Meanwhile, the 7-day average has declined significantly after increasing during the holiday season. It now stands at 4.6 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 February 27, 2021.

IHS Area
positive *
7-day rolling
positivity *
Alaska 519,207 11,145 439,188 2.5% 0.8%
Albuquerque 87,679 7,961 59,595 11.8% 6.0%
Bemidji 139,125 10,022 125,595 7.4% 2.6%
Billings 93,714 7,287 83,158 8.1% 5.6%
California 70,210 7,393 59,097 11.1% 10.1%
Great Plains 132,270 13,761 117,999 10.4% 5.6%
Nashville 68,434 5,840 61,696 8.6% 6.6%
Navajo 226,272 30,843 153,475 16.7% 8.0%
Oklahoma City 444,902 59,080 380,949 13.4% 8.8%
Phoenix 162,726 23,100 138,756 14.3% 6.1%
Portland 101,659 7,181 93,663 7.1% 3.0%
Tucson 24,260 2,700 21,407 11.2% 4.8%
TOTAL 2,070,458 186,313 1,734,578 9.7% 4.6%

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

Source: Indian Health Service (

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