Whittier Street Health Center Recognizes Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month
On October 5, 1978 President Jimmy Carter signed into law a declaration acknowledging the first week of May as “Asian/Pacific American Heritage Week.” Over the next decade this expanded to encompass the entire month of May as a time to recognize the rich culture shared by Asian and Pacific Islander Americans. This month, Whittier Street Health Center (“Whittier”) honors all persons of Asian/Pacific decent, and recognizes/acknowledges health care disparities and social inequities that exist among this particular population.
According to the 2017 U.S. Census Bureau, Asia Americans and Pacific Islanders are the fastest growing racial group in the United States, accounting for roughly 18.2 million of the nation’s population. Despite the rapid growth among Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, there are many areas across the country where members of this population struggle to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Approximately 19.4% of Asian adults reported (per the 2017 U.S. Census Report) a lack of consistent access to/receipt of healthcare with Pacific Islanders reporting they receive a poor level of care. The lack of access to care has manifested into a multitude of different health consequences with cancer being the number one (1) cause of death among Asian Americans. Additionally, 20% of Asian Americans reported corollaries associated with diabetes. Pacific Islanders reported a higher rate of sexually transmitted diseases with 25.3 males and 2.1 females (per 100,000) diagnosed with HIV; by contrast, rates among white Americas are 9.6 and 1.7 respectively. While the disparities in health care are vast, they can be narrowed to the root cause of barriers to health care and health education.
Whittier is dedicated to providing accessible healthcare and social services to diverse populations in order to eliminate the disparities that exist in and among its communities. We serve as health champions for our diverse patient population, and stand ready to support our Asian/Pacific patients, friends, neighbors and partners with the excellence, dignity, respect and compassion.