SLP Joshuaa Allison-Burbank began working for the Indian Health Service in his Navajo Nation home in February of 2020. What happened next changed how he thought about his community and his profession. When the pandemic began, Allison-Burbank found himself working in an outdoor triage center at Northern Navajo Medical Center, witnessing the devastating effects of Dikos Ntsaaígíí, or COVID-19.
Faced with many challenges, including limited access to running water and high poverty rates, the Navajo Nation faced a higher rate of mortality by COVID-19 than any state in the U.S. at one point last year. But now, Navajo Nation is sharing a success story—of plummeting COVID numbers and exemplary rates of vaccination.
On this episode, Allison-Burbank joins the podcast to shares his story, what he’s learned in this difficult year, and the specific Navajo story he uses to find inspiration during the pandemic.