Nearly three-fourths of HRSA Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program (RWHAP) clients are from racial/ethnic minority populations. American Indians/Alaska Natives (AI/AN) comprise 0.5% of persons receiving HIV care from the RWHAP. The majority are low income, men who have sex with men, and over 50 years of age.
National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is March 20. The 2021 theme is Zero is Possible Together: Innovation + Awareness.
From 2010-2019, viral suppression rates among AI/AN RWHAP clients receiving medical care improved significantly, from 70.4% to 88.8%. This improvement tracks that for all RWHAP clients over the same time period: 69.5% to 88.1% (2019 Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program Annual Client-Level Data Report, HRSA 2020).
See HRSA's HIV/AIDS Bureau Policy Notice 07-01 Use of Funds for American Indians and Alaska Natives and Indian Health Service Programs on access to RWHAP services for AI/AN populations.
TA and Training Resources
Various resources have been developed to address HIV/AIDS among Native American and Alaska Native populations. Below are highlights:
- Clinician's Guide: Working with Native Americans Living with HIV. This document is for medical providers, and it summarizes cultural challenges and solutions for delivering HIV/AIDS care to Native Americans. The guide was developed in 2002 and has since been updated
- The Indian Health Service HIV/AIDS webpage includes training and additional resources for delivering HIV prevention and care services to AI/AN populations.
- BESAFE: A Cultural Competency Model for American Indians, Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians. This cultural competency guide, one in a series of such resources, is for health-care professionals providing services to these populations. The guide is based on the BE SAFE framework (Barriers to Care, Ethics, Sensitivity of the Provider, Assessment, Facts, and Encounters)