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Welcome to the ihs hiv/aids program

HIV/AIDS is a critical and growing health issue within our Native population. We can avoid complacency and increase awareness of the impact of HIV/AIDS on American Indians and Alaska Natives. American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/AN) are ranked third in the nation in the rate of HIV/AIDS diagnosis compared to all other races and ethnicities. We also face additional health disparities that contribute significantly to the risk of HIV transmission such as substance abuse and sexually transmitted infections. Amongst our people, HIV/AIDS exists in both urban and rural populations (and on or near tribal lands); however, many of those with HIV are not aware of their status. These statistics, risk factors and missed opportunities for screening illuminate the need to go beyond raising awareness about HIV and begin active integration of initiatives that will help routinize HIV services. If the status quo remains in our Native population, prevalence will continue to increase and we may face an irreversible problem. Therefore, we must change the way we discuss HIV, change (and improve) the way we integrate HIV testing into our health services, and firmly establish our linkages and access to care. Ultimately, we can do our part to reduce the stigma that surrounds HIV/AIDS within our health culture.

I would like to thank dedicated staff that continue to provide HIV prevention, testing, and treatment services in the face of many challenges. - Robert G. McSwain



  • The IHS HIV/AIDS Administrative Work Plan (Strategic Plan) has been released
    This is a culmination of work from multiple stakeholders, professionals, many community members and advocates both internal and external to IHS. This is an IHS document, which will remain fluid and may be adjusted as new initiatives arise. That said, it represents a good blueprint of activities and truly represents the principles of the program enumerated within the document



Save The Date

March 20, 2008






  • Native CBA Network:
    The Native CBA Providers’ Network Capacity Building Assistance Fact Sheet

Save The Date

June 27, 2007

National HIV Testing Day, June 27. An estimated 250,000 people in the United States are HIV/AIDS positive and don’t know it. Read More





IHS HIV/AIDS Program Podcast at

The following podcast was done in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services Office of HIV/AIDS Policy (OHAP). As we attempt to implement our strategic plans, one of the goals continues to be program integration and collaboration with partners external to the Agency.

This is just one example of how we can partner with other government stakeholders to raise awareness, augment our resources (and technology) and open discussion about HIV/AIDS in support of our mission for American Indians and Alaska Natives.

This podcast, along with others about HIV/AIDS, can be accessed at the website

Main Topics In This Site

The IHS HIV/AIDS Program

The IHS HIV/AIDS “Program” is cultivated from a myriad of services, projects, facilities, funding sources and field expertise. Interagency and community input are gathered for gap analysis, needs assessment and for further strengthening of the program across multiple levels of influence. Given current epidemiological trends and known vulnerabilities to HIV/AIDS in the AI/AN population, it is critical we consider the larger preventive public health and population approaches for effective response. The Program is implemented and executed via an integrative and comprehensive approach through collaborations across multi-health sectors, both internal and external to the agency. It attempts to encompass all types of service delivery ‘systems’ including IHS, Tribal and Urban facilities.
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Minority AIDS Initiatives

The IHS receives a portion of funds for HIV/AIDS activities from the HHS Office of HIV/AIDS Program and Policy (OHAPP). This is in the form of funds from the Minority AIDS Initiative (MAI), which responds to the epidemic’s impact on minority/ethnic populations, including American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN). IHS receives its allocation from the HHS Secretary’s MAI Fund, however it is based on multi-agency proposals. These funds are somewhat ‘discretionary’ as opposed to the larger sum of MAI base funding that goes directly to other HHS agencies. The IHS MAI dollars fund initiatives that are linked through MAI to the President’s Initiative on HIV/AIDS.
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IHS HIV/AIDS Center of Excellence (CoE) (link to external web site)

Phoenix indian medical centerThe HIV Center of Excellence (HIVCOE) is a clinically based center for HIV care, treatment, research, and intervention. The center is an Indian Health Service program at the Phoenix Indian Medical Center serving the tribal and IHS facilities in the Area. The goal is to provide the highest quality culturally competent HIV services including clinically based intervention and medically appropriate care and treatment. The mission is to provide a culturally competent, comprehensive model HIV health care delivery system in the context of the existing continuum of services for native people.

Epidemiology: CDC Fact Sheet

The numbers of HIV and AIDS diagnoses for American Indians and Alaska Natives represent less than 1% of the total number of HIV/AIDS cases reported to the HIV/AIDS Reporting System. However, when population size is taken into account, this population in 2004 was ranked 3rd in rates of AIDS diagnoses, after African Americans and Hispanics [1]. The rate of AIDS diagnoses for this group has been higher than that for whites since 1995.
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This file last modified: Tuesday March 18, 2008  8:01 AM