Ryan White and Native American HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

Ryan White and Native American HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

March 20, 2016
TARGET Center
Native American HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

The number of HIV/AIDS cases among Native Americans is small but the impact is significant. The rate of AIDS among Native Americans and Alaska Natives, who represent just 1.7% of the U.S. population, is 30 times higher than whites, as documented in this HRSA HIV/AIDS Bureau fact sheet.

According to 2014 HRSA client level data, while clients of the Ryan White program have better retention in care rates (80.4%) as compared to national retention in care data, the rates are not as favorable for Native Americans engaged in Ryan White care (74.4%).

March 20 is National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. The 2016 theme is: Hear Indigenous Voices: Uniting the Bold Voices of American Indians, Alaska Natives (AI/AN) and Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islanders.

History of Care for Native Americans

American Indian/Alaska Native populations comprise <2% of individuals served by the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program. The Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program has a long history of targeting services to Native Americans and Alaska Natives as part of the program's focus on providing HIV/AIDS care to underserved populations. The first efforts began in the early 1990s through investigatation of models of care under SPNS, Special Projects of National Significance. In 2004, HRSA's HIV/AIDS Bureau convened a series of Community Consultation Meetings to assess the impact of HIV/AIDS on various underserved populations. One session examined Access to HIV/AIDS Care Issues for Native Americans.

TA and Training Resources

Over time, a number of resources have been developed to address HIV/AIDS among Native American and Alaska Native populations. Some emerged from early SPNS work as well as from clinical programs that focused on cultural issues related to HIV/AIDS care among this diverse population. Highlights include:

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HIV/AIDS Awareness Days and Ryan White

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