The fourth annual National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day highlights the impact of the virus on Native Americans—American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians—and promotes the need for expanded testing and treatment options for this group. Commemorated each March 20, this awareness day was first established by the National Native American AIDS Prevention Center.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Native people have the highest HIV rate in the United States after African Americans and Latinos. Native people also tend to be diagnosed with HIV later in their infection and are more likely to progress to AIDS than their white counterparts.

“National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day takes place at the start of spring, which symbolizes profound change, new beginnings and birth for many Native communities,” Paul Kawata, executive director of the National Minority AIDS Council, said in a statement. “I hope we all use this as a time to re-dedicate ourselves to helping to end HIV among American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians and within all communities of color.”