May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

Happy Asian American

and Pacific Islander Heritage Month!

Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month is, “A celebration of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States. A rather broad term, Asian/Pacific encompasses all of the Asian continent and the Pacific islands of Melanesia (New Guinea, New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Fiji and the Solomon Islands), Micronesia (Marianas, Guam, Wake Island, Palau, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Nauru and the Federated States of Micronesia) and Polynesia (New Zealand, Hawaiian Islands, Rotuma, Midway Islands, Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Cook Islands, French Polynesia and Easter Island).

“The month of May was chosen to commemorate the immigration of the first Japanese to the United States on May 7, 1843, and to mark the anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. The majority of the workers who laid the tracks were Chinese immigrants,” according to the US Dept. of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Heath.

Hamakua-Kohala Health Advocates for You

In an effort to serve our diverse community as well as possible, Hamakua-Kohala Health is a member of The Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO) whose “goal is to create a national voice to advocate for the unique and diverse health needs of AA&NHPI communities and the community health providers that serve those needs,” as well as “advocating for policies and programs that improve the provision of health care services that are community driven, financially affordable, linguistically accessible, and culturally appropriate.”


“It is significant to note that in comparison to other ethnic groups, Native Hawaiians/ Pacific Islanders have higher rates of smoking, alcohol consumption, and obesity. This group also has little access to cancer prevention and control programs. Some leading causes of death among Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders include: cancer, heart disease, unintentional injuries (accidents), stroke and diabetes. Some other health conditions and risk factors that are prevalent among Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders are hepatitis B, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis. The tuberculosis rate (cases per 100,000) in 2015 was 30 times higher for Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders, with a case rate of 18.2, as compared to 0.6 for the white population.”

Insurance Coverage

“In 2015, 66.4 percent of Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders … used private health insurance. Also in 2015, 33.4 percent of Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders … relied on public health insurance. Finally, 7.8 percent of Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders … were uninsured,” according to US Dept. of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Heath.

MOST HEALTH INSURANCE PLANS COVER LIFESAVING PREVENTATIVE TESTS. USE THE HEALTH BENEFITS YOU ARE ALREADY PAYING FOR TO GET SCREENED! As a community-based health center, Hamakua-Kohala Health provides comprehensive primary and preventative healthcare to everyone, regardless of your ability to pay, even if you have no insurance.

Make an appointment today at one of our clinics