Public Health 3.0 calls for the inclusion of new partners and novel data to bring systemic change to the US public health landscape. The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic has illuminated significant data gaps influenced by ongoing colonial legacies of racism and erasure. American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) populations and communities have been disproportionately affected by incomplete public health data and by the COVID-19 pandemic itself. Our findings indicate that only 26 US states were able to calculate COVID-19‒related death rates for AI/AN populations. Given that 37 states have Indian Health Service locations, we argue that public health researchers and practitioners should have a far larger data set of aggregated public health information on AI/AN populations. Despite enormous obstacles, local Tribal facilities have created effective community responses to COVID-19 testing, tracking, and vaccine administration. Their knowledge can lead the way to a healthier nation. Federal and state governments and health agencies must learn to responsibly support Tribal efforts, collect data from AI/AN persons in partnership with Indian Health Service and Tribal governments, and communicate effectively with Tribal authorities to ensure Indigenous data sovereignty. (Am J Public Health. 2021;111(S3): S208-S214. https://doi.org/10.2105/AJPH.2021.306415).
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health