Although non-Hispanic American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) persons account for 0.7% of the U.S. population,* a recent analysis reported that 1.3% of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases reported to CDC with known race and ethnicity were among AI/AN persons (1). To assess the impact of COVID-19 among the AI/AN population, reports of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases during January 22†–July 3, 2020 were analyzed. The analysis was limited to 23 states§ with >70% complete race/ethnicity information and five or more laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases among both AI/AN persons (alone or in combination with other races and ethnicities) and non-Hispanic white (white) persons. Among 424,899 COVID-19 cases reported by these states, 340,059 (80%) had complete race/ethnicity information; among these 340,059 cases, 9,072 (2.7%) occurred among AI/AN persons, and 138,960 (40.9%) among white persons. Among 340,059 cases with complete patient race/ethnicity data, the cumulative incidence among AI/AN persons in these 23 states was 594 per 100,000 AI/AN population (95% confidence interval [CI] = 203–1,740), compared with 169 per 100,000 white population (95% CI = 137–209) (rate ratio [RR] = 3.5; 95% CI = 1.2–10.1). AI/AN persons with COVID-19 were younger (median age = 40 years; interquartile range [IQR] = 26–56 years) than were white persons (median age = 51 years; IQR = 32–67 years). More complete case report data and timely, culturally responsive, and evidence-based public health efforts that leverage the strengths of AI/AN communities are needed to decrease COVID-19 transmission and improve patient outcomes. READ MORE
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