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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Coronavirus Disease 2019

The Indian Health Service continues to work closely with our tribal and urban Indian organization partners and state and local public health officials to coordinate a comprehensive public health response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected American Indian and Alaska Native populations across the country. American Indians and Alaska Natives have infection rates over 3.5 times higher Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving  than non-Hispanic whites, are over four times Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving  more likely to be hospitalized as a result of COVID-19, and have higher rates Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving  of mortality at younger ages than non-Hispanic whites. This has highlighted the need for comprehensive, culturally appropriate personal and public health services that are available and accessible to all American Indian and Alaska Native people.

A Historic Investment

The IHS has received a historic investment of more than $9 billion [PDF] to provide resources for IHS, tribal, and urban Indian health programs to address long-standing health inequities experienced by American Indians and Alaska Natives by ensuring a comprehensive public health response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. We have worked closely with tribes and urban Indian organizations throughout this pandemic to get resources out to facilities as quickly as possible.

Increasing Availability and Access to Vaccination Sites

IHS continues to address barriers to COVID-19 vaccination in American Indian and Alaska Native communities by increasing availability to convenient and accessible vaccination sites; increasing clinical and community-based workforce for outreach, education, and vaccination; and accelerating COVID-19 vaccine distribution and administration. Across the Indian health system, we have administered well over one million vaccine doses, increased drive-through testing sites, and provided next-generation at home tests and rapid tests.

Achievements and Improvements

It has been more than a year now that IHS and our dedicated workforce have been responding to COVID-19. Over the past year, IHS has worked to ensure the safety of our IHS patients and staff, as well as tribal community members. We have made some considerable achievements such as developing a COVID-19 data surveillance system and partnering with the Navajo Nation and other local organizations on a project to support the installation of 59 transitional water points on the Navajo Nation. These efforts have increased water access for over 9,600 homes without piped water.

The pandemic has highlighted challenges and risks to our current health information technology system and has reinforced IHS’ commitment to the modernization of our health IT infrastructure. Despite these challenges, we have successfully expanded our use of technology to provide telehealth services during COVID-19.The funding for electronic health record modernization provided by Congress will allow us to proceed with the foundational steps in this important multi-year effort.

Importance of Partnerships

We look forward to continuing our work with tribal, urban Indian organization, and federal partners across the country. The IHS remains committed to working closely with our stakeholders and understands the importance of everyone coming together during this difficult time.

For the latest general information about COVID-19, we encourage everyone to periodically review CDC’s COVID-19 webpage Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving . Information on the number of COVID-19 vaccines administered across the IHS can be found on the CDC COVID Data Tracker Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving  in the Federal Entities section.

COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution and Administration by IHS Area

As of August 27, 2023, the IHS is distributing all COVID-19 vaccines currently authorized or approved in the U.S., including Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Novavax. Janssen/Johnson & Johnson is no longer being distributed in the U.S. and all U.S. supply has expired. The table below shows the total number of vaccine doses distributed and administered to date, per IHS Area, for facilities that chose to receive vaccine through the IHS jurisdiction. The data includes COVID-19 vaccinations administered to all ages and specialty groups authorized for emergency use or fully licensed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Total Doses Distributed
Area Total Doses Distributed Total Doses Administered**
Albuquerque 302,540 204,503
Bemidji 346,820 187,551
Billings 206,500 90,563
California 521,420 237,216
Great Plains 435,050 190,250
Nashville 218,870 117,391
Navajo 726,490 438,676
Oklahoma City 907,525 535,672
Phoenix 502,970 273,903
Portland 228,900 115,457
Tucson 22,440 14,997
Grand Total 4,419,525 2,406,179

*Distributed Data Source: IHS National Supply Service Center, includes total doses ordered and delivered by August 25, 2023 to facilities that chose the IHS jurisdiction for vaccine distribution.

**Administered Data Source: Data is reported from the Vaccine Administration Management System (VAMS) and IHS Central Aggregator Service (CAS). Data may be different than data on the CDC COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker due to lags and ongoing quality review of data, including resolving data errors.

Note:The COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution and Administration by IHS Area data is only reflective of facilities that chose the IHS jurisdiction for vaccine distribution. Alaska Area data is not reported as all tribes chose to receive COVID-19 vaccine from the State of Alaska. The Tucson Area data only includes one tribe that chose the IHS jurisdiction for vaccine distribution.

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 Sep 20, 2023.

IHS Area
7-day rolling
Alaska 1,146,303 58,379 936,940 5.9% 0.0%
Albuquerque 191,325 17,870 145,992 10.9% 14.1%
Bemidji 339,716 35,673 302,472 10.5% 3.8%
Billings 164,990 14,568 145,304 9.1% 6.1%
California 214,373 24,321 179,167 12.0% 18.9%
Great Plains 344,522 36,179 300,785 10.7% 4.6%
Nashville 220,581 24,309 185,169 11.6% 17.8%
Navajo 666,680 96,463 483,439 16.6% 12.0%
Oklahoma 1,424,819 213,313 1,190,286 15.2% 17.3%
Phoenix 363,805 54,359 302,120 15.2% 7.7%
Portland 270,666 24,141 244,561 9.0% 5.6%
Tucson 92,214 10,498 81,459 11.4% 11.5%
TOTAL 5,439,994 610,073 4,497,694 11.9% 10.8%

COVID-19 testing data is updated on Thursdays.

Website last updated Sep 21, 2023