National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

March 20

It’s all relative, our experience makes a difference.

National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NNHAAD) highlights efforts to address HIV and raise awareness of its impact in American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) communities. First observed in 2007, NNHAAD encourages HIV education, testing, prevention, and treatment among AI/AN communities. The National Native HIV Network organizes this observance and coordinates related activities. This year’s theme, “It’s all relative, our experience makes a difference,” highlights the importance of inclusivity in efforts to address the HIV epidemic. 

Issues such as HIV-related stigma, lack of awareness, and limited access to HIV services contribute to a disproportionate burden of HIV in AI/AN communities. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

  • There were 3,270 AI/AN individuals with HIV in the United States in 2021.
  • There were an estimated 223 new HIV diagnoses among AI/AN individuals in 2021, an increase of 16 percent from 193 newly diagnosed cases in 2017. 
  • For every 100 AI/AN people with HIV, an estimated 80 people are aware of their HIV status—the lowest rate of any racial or ethnic group. 

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) HIV research program, coordinated by the NIH Office of AIDS Research (OAR), supports research to reduce HIV-related disparities based on race and ethnicity. This includes efforts to better understand and address HIV-related stigma and discrimination, which can discourage people from accessing HIV services. NIH HIV research also looks at the most effective ways to encourage AI/AN populations to access HIV testing, prevention, and treatment services. Efforts to address HIV among AI/AN populations must recognize diversity among Tribal communities and ensure interventions are culturally appropriate. 

Social Media

Use the hashtag #NNHAAD to follow the conversation on social media. Find downloadable graphics and sample social media messages to promote HIV prevention, testing, and treatment in AI/AN communities on the NNHAAD and CDC NNHAAD webpages. 

Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day logo.

Additional Resources

NIH Office of AIDS Research

  • FY 2021-2025 NIH Strategic Plan for HIV and HIV-Related Research (NIH HIV Strategic Plan): The NIH HIV Strategic Plan provides a roadmap for NIH to guide HIV and HIV-related research and direct HIV research funding to the highest-priority areas to help end HIV. Reducing HIV-related health disparities and stigma and determining the most effective strategies to encourage uptake of HIV testing and prevention are priorities for HIV-related research.
  • is an online resource, maintained by OAR, that offers up-to-date HIV information to the general consumer, people with HIV, and those who care for them. HIVinfo provides HIV-related infographics and other resources. The HIVinfo HIV Source Native American collection provides resources on HIV research, prevention, testing, and treatment in AI/AN communities.
  • Building Research Partnerships for Healthy Sovereign Tribal Nations: This OAR Director’s Blog post describes the collaboration between OAR and the NIH Tribal Health Research Office (THRO). Through this partnership, THRO helps OAR, and the NIH HIV research program, work with Tribal Nations to address HIV in a way that respects sovereignty, is culturally appropriate, and responds to community needs.   

Indian Health Service

The Indian Health Service (IHS) National HIV/AIDS Program coordinates and promotes HIV prevention and treatment activities for AI/AN populations and works with Tribal organizations to improve access to HIV services. The IHS website provides statistics on HIV in AI/AN communities, resources and prevention tools, and more. provides information on the U.S. government’s HIV response. aims to expand visibility of relevant federal HIV policies, programs, and resources and to increase knowledge about HIV and access to HIV services to people with, or affected by, HIV. The NNHAAD webpage provides information about HIV in AI/AN communities and links to related federal resources. In addition, this webpage provides information on the impact of HIV on racial and ethnic groups, including AI/AN groups. 

This blog highlights two videos, part of the HISstory, HERstory, THEIRstory, OURSTORY: StoryTelling as Resilience initiative, which uses traditional storytelling to increase awareness and knowledge of HIV and reduce HIV-related stigma.  


CDC’s NNHAAD webpage provides resources to help spread awareness about HIV in AI/AN communities. In addition, CDC’s Let’s Stop HIV Together campaign empowers communities, partners, and health providers to promote HIV testing, prevention, and treatment.

Other Resources

The official National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day webpage explains the history of NNHAAD and the significance of marking the annual observance on March 20, the first day of spring. The webpage also provides resources on HIV for AI/AN communities.