Attempts by tribal leaders to obtain coronavirus distribution data from the US federal government were unsuccessful.
It is reported by the publication Politico.
Against the backdrop of the U.S. engaging in riots in support of the black population over the murder of African American George Floyd by police, the desperate struggle of the Indian tribes against the epidemic of the deadly virus remains almost unnoticed. According to media reports, public health authorities have denied the Indians information about the spread of COVID-19 on their lands. At a time when Native Americans are no longer able to contain the epidemic, Washington’s actions are comparable to the passive genocide of the people.
“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention rejected requests from tribal epidemiologists about the data they make available to the states. The authorities of Michigan and Massachusetts from early spring also resisted the transmission of testing information and confirmed cases, citing privacy concerns, and refused to enter into agreements with the tribes to track contacts or other types of surveillance, ” the newspaper reports, citing eight tribal leaders.
The situation has led to the fact that the indigenous population is not able to track the spread of coronavirus, which is a serious blow to the already fragile internal health system. The tribal authorities do not know where the outbreaks of the disease occur, how many people became infected, where to enter quarantine.
The media draws attention to the fact that tribal epidemiological centers were created to coordinate efforts with federal agencies. Moreover, the Affordable Care Act states that tribal centers have equal rights with state health departments and even federal government agencies. However, this does not prevent officials from questioning the importance of the Indian departments, refusing them assistance.
According to the analysis of the APM research laboratory, in comparison with the rest of the population, indigenous peoples have a higher mortality rate of COVID-19. In New Mexico, nearly 60% of coronavirus deaths are among Indians, although they make up only 8.8% of the state’s population.