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Posted: March 11, 2021

COVID-19 Indian Country IHS

The Indian Health Service has updated its coronavirus data, showing results through March 9, 2021.

According to the data, 187,827 tests have returned positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. That represents an increase of 0.1 percent from the 187,596 cases previously reported by the IHS.

Altogether, 2,115,971 coronavirus tests have been administered within the IHS through March 9, the data shows. That marks an increase of 0.3 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, 9.6 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 3.1 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 March 9, 2021.

IHS Area
positive *
7-day rolling
positivity *
Alaska 533,315 11,254 451,938 2.4% 0.7%
Albuquerque 89,663 8,030 61,451 11.6% 4.8%
Bemidji 143,784 10,157 130,079 7.2% 3.3%
Billings 94,491 7,302 83,933 8.0% 2.0%
California 71,770 7,537 60,557 11.1% 10.9%
Great Plains 134,335 13,912 119,902 10.4% 5.7%
Nashville 70,411 5,935 63,509 8.5% 4.8%
Navajo 230,042 31,061 156,504 16.6% 5.0%
Oklahoma City 453,768 59,519 389,164 13.3% 4.9%
Phoenix 164,887 23,147 140,881 14.1% 3.7%
Portland 104,754 7,256 96,753 7.0% 2.5%
Tucson 24,751 2,717 21,881 11.0% 3.1%
TOTAL 2,115,971 187,827 1,776,552 9.6% 3.1%

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

Source: Indian Health Service (

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