Indianz.Com > COVID-19 > Indian Health Service (Department of Health and Human Services)
Posted: September 30, 2021

ihscovid19The Indian Health Service has updated its coronavirus data, showing results through September 29, 2021.

According to the data, 251,605 tests have returned positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. That represents an increase of nearly 1.0 percent from the 249,140 cases previously reported on September 26.

Altogether, 3,029,421 coronavirus tests have been administered within the IHS, the results show. That represents an increase of 0.8 percent from three 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, 11 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 9.3 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 29, 2021.

IHS Area
7-day rolling
Alaska 766,807 19,420 648,155 2.9% 9.5%
Albuquerque 113,209 8,868 83,352 9.6% 2.9%
Bemidji 205,055 14,598 189,273 7.2% 9.1%
Billings 120,434 8,680 108,092 7.4% 9.3%
California 118,156 11,877 101,511 10.5% 7.6%
Great Plains 176,428 16,041 159,775 9.1% 8.8%
Nashville 111,952 9,304 99,542 8.5% 5.8%
Navajo 318,969 36,290 230,497 13.6% 9.9%
Oklahoma City 687,745 85,500 598,702 12.5% 13.1%
Phoenix 212,837 26,821 184,936 12.7% 12.8%
Portland 158,879 10,922 147,286 6.9% 11.4%
Tucson 38,950 3,284 35,540 8.5% 5.0%
TOTAL 3,029,421 251,605 2,586,661 8.9% 9.3%

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

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