National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day began in 2007 to promote HIV education, testing, prevention, and treatment in the Native communities. This day highlights efforts to fight HIV/AIDS and the impact HIV/AIDS has had on Native communities, which include American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN), and Native Hawaiian populations. The 2023 theme is “Weaving Our Horizon: Strength. CommUnity. Equity.” which celebrates continued efforts to reduce HIV/AIDS in Native communities.
In 2019, among AI/AN population, there were an estimated 230 new HIV infections (HIV Incidence, CDC). From 2015 to 2019, diagnosis of HIV infection among men who have sex with men (MSM) increased by 24 percent. During this same time period, the rate of deaths of adults and adolescents with HIV in this population decreased by 19 percent (HIV Surveillance Report, CDC). Some of the challenges Native communities face include lack of awareness of their HIV status, alcohol and illicit drug use, data limitation, high rates of sexually transmitted infections (STI), stigma and confidentiality, and socioeconomic issues.
The U.S. Indian Health Service developed a Tribal HIV/STD Training Kit and Policy Guide (IHS). The kit contains facts about sexual health, tools for accessing community readiness to implement a sexual health program, and additional resources to help prevent the transmission of HIV and other STIs in the Native communities.
The U.S. government recognizes National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.
National Native HIV and AIDS Awareness Day Webpages
NIH Research Related to HIV/AIDS in American Indians, Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians
- NIH Strategic Plan for HIV and HIV-Related Research (FY 2021—2025), from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of AIDS Research (OAR): The Plan describes NIH research priorities to prevent, treat, and eventually cure HIV/AIDS.
Current Research on HIV/AIDS and Native Americans
Additional Information and Resources
From the Indian Health Service:
- HIV and American Indians/Alaska Native Peoples.
- HIV Surveillance Report: Diagnoses of HIV infection in the United States and Dependent Areas, 2019.
- Health Disparities in American Indians and Alaska Natives in HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STDs, and TB.