Navajo Nation passes NYC for COVID-19 rate - Albuquerque Journal

Navajo Nation passes NYC for COVID-19 rate

Medical personnel conduct drive-thru Covid_19 testing earlier at the Rehoboth McKinley Christian Health Care Services in Gallup, New Mexico. (Roberto E. Rosales/Albuquerque Journal)

The Navajo Nation has a higher rate of reported COVID-19 cases than New York City, according to an analysis of state and local data sources.

In fact, it appears to have the highest rates in the country, surpassing previous hot spots New York state and New Jersey.

According to the Navajo Department of Health, the reservation had 4,253 cases of the illness caused by coronavirus as of Wednesday night. This means it has a rate of 2,449 cases per 100,000 based on 2010 census data that reported 173,667 people living on the reservation, which spans parts of Arizona, New Mexico and Utah. One hundred forty-six people have died and at least 1,026 have recovered.

New York City – which is home to more than half of its state’s cases – has a slightly lower rate of COVID-19 than the Navajo Nation, according to an analysis of data provided by the city’s Health Department. The city has 192,374 confirmed cases, or a rate of 2,290 per 100,000 residents.

By contrast, New York state has 356,179 cases for a rate of 1,822.6 per 100,000 residents, according to data provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. New Jersey has 149,013 cases, for a rate of 1,672.7 per 100,000.

In a virtual town hall Tuesday, Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez pushed back by pointing out that the Navajo Nation is testing mass amounts of people at a time, which means they’re finding more positive cases than other entities.

“So, of course, if you test a lot of people you’re going to have positive cases,” he said.

Nez said more than 25,000 tests had been given, including rapid tests that provide preliminary results in minutes and the nasal swab tests, which take longer.

“Let’s also tell people that we are testing aggressively,” Nez said. “This past weekend, I heard Gov. (Andrew) Cuomo say that he has tested a little over 7% of his population in the state of New York. That’s one of the highest of all the 50 states throughout the country. Do you want to know what Navajo’s percentage is? 11.5%. Let that sink in.”

As of Wednesday night, the percentage was even higher, with 13.2% of residents being tested.

He said that, across the country, states are generally testing less than 10% of their population.

“We are No. 1 in terms of testing throughout this country,” Nez said. “That’s because of the help from front-line workers.”

He said that recently, fewer positive cases have been reported each day, which he took as a good sign that the strict stay-at-home orders and curfew are having an effect.

“The past two days we’ve seen a decrease in COVID positives,” Nez said. “It’s because of you, ladies and gentleman, my people. It’s because of you holding people accountable to stay home these numbers are going down.”

Home » News » New Mexico News » Navajo Nation passes NYC for COVID-19 rate

Insert Question Legislature form in Legis only stories

Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email

taboola desktop

ABQjournal can get you answers in all pages


Questions about the Legislature?
Albuquerque Journal can get you answers
Email addresses are used solely for verification and to speed the verification process for repeat questioners.
New Mexico Finance Authority launches program to rehabilitate homes
ABQnews Seeker
New Mexico Finance Authority launches ... New Mexico Finance Authority launches program to rehabilitate homes.
DeSantis recruiters eyed Catholic church for migrant flights that ...
ABQnews Seeker
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Florida Gov. ... SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis' recruiters set their sights on Sacred Heart Catholic Church in the Texas border city of El ...
Vara bringing a taste of Spain with its Tinto ...
ABQnews Seeker
The 2020 vintage of Tinto Especial ... The 2020 vintage of Tinto Especial focuses on Spanish influences from the Catalonia region.
Singer-songwriter Logan Ledger to open for Vincent Neil Emerson
ABQnews Seeker
Logan Ledger's upcoming album, "Golden State" ... Logan Ledger's upcoming album, "Golden State" is due out on Sept. 8, but he's hitting the road opening for Vincent Neil Emerson.
Colorado's most destructive wildfire caused by embers from old ...
ABQnews Seeker
BOULDER, Colo. (AP) -- Embers from ... BOULDER, Colo. (AP) -- Embers from a smoldering scrap wood fire set days earlier outside a home used by a Christian religious communal group ...
Documentary looks at the crucial role libraries play in ...
ABQnews Seeker
"Library Stories: Books on the Backroads" ... "Library Stories: Books on the Backroads" will air at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 15, on New Mexico PBS.
Lobo Mazza-Downie runs to All-America status at NCAA Championship ...
ABQnews Seeker
University of New Mexico runner Amelia ... University of New Mexico runner Amelia Mazza-Downie finished fourth on Thursday night in the women's 10,000-meter final at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field ...
Do-it-all Montes reaching a new level as Isotope hitter
ABQnews Seeker
Loosely translated, "Coco" means coconut in ... Loosely translated, "Coco" means coconut in Spanish. In 2023 minor league baseball terms, with Isotope Coco Montes it's synonymous with raking.
Trump charged over classified documents in 1st federal indictment ...
ABQnews Seeker
MIAMI (AP) -- Donald Trump said ... MIAMI (AP) -- Donald Trump said Thursday that he was indicted for mishandling classified documents at his Florida estate, a remarkable development that makes ...