Indianz.Com > COVID-19 > Indian Health Service (Department of Health and Human Services)
Posted: September 27, 2021

ihscovid19The Indian Health Service has updated its coronavirus data, showing results through September 26, 2021.

According to the data, 249,140 tests have returned positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. That represents an increase of almost 0.9 percent from the 247,032 cases previously reported on September 22.

Altogether, 3,004,667 coronavirus tests have been administered within the IHS, the results show. That represents an increase of 0.7 percent from four days 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 five 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, 10 out of 12 IHS areas are seeing high COVID-19 rates. The 📈 red graph symbol indicates the areas in which positivity rates are on the rise, with multiple symbols indicating notable increases:

Notably, the 7-day rolling average positivity for the Alaska Area has steadily grown in recent weeks. The region recorded its highest-ever rate with the release of data on September 26, beating prior records. Throughout most of the pandemic, the Alaska Area had seen the lowest rate of COVID-19 cases within the IHS.

Overall, 8.9 percent of IHS tests have been positive since the onset of the pandemic, the data shows. Meanwhile, the 7-day average stands at 11.0 percent following a long period of far lower rates in the spring of 2021.

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.

Beginning June 7, the IHS began updating its coronavirus data on a weekly basis. But as the number of COVID-19 cases grows again, the agency is updating results on Mondays and Thursdays. During the height of the pandemic throughout 2020 and the first half of 2021, results were provided every day.

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 September 26, 2021.

IHS Area
7-day rolling
Alaska 762,171 19,022 644,474 2.9% 10.3%
Albuquerque 112,625 8,837 81,486 9.8% 2.8%
Bemidji 202,503 14,379 186,951 7.1% 10.6%
Billings 119,723 8,591 107,402 7.4% 7.9%
California 117,580 11,842 100,992 10.5% 14.2%
Great Plains 174,650 15,906 158,021 9.1% 7.8%
Nashville 109,548 9,179 98,417 8.5% 6.2%
Navajo 317,454 36,103 229,242 13.6% 13.8%
Oklahoma City 681,614 84,645 593,559 12.5% 13.1%
Phoenix 211,552 26,661 183,810 12.7% 13.6%
Portland 157,527 10,750 146,070 6.9% 10.3%
Tucson 37,720 3,225 34,369 8.6% 4.8%
TOTAL 3,004,667 249,140 2,564,793 8.9% 11.0%

COVID-19 testing data is updated on Mondays and Thursdays.

Source: Indian Health Service (

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