New Report Provides Health Data and Resources for Asian and Pacific Islander Community

Report is first in a series highlighting health data for specific racial and ethnic groups

Baltimore, MD (May 6, 2013) - The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) has released a new report, "Asian and Pacific Islanders in Maryland: Health Data and Resources,” the first in a series to raise awareness of health conditions and provide educational resources for minority populations in the state.  The report’s release coincides with Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month.

The Asian/Pacific Islander population is one of the fastest growing groups in Maryland and across the country.  The 2012 Census showed that between 2000 and 2010, the Asian/Pacific Islander population increased in Maryland by 51 percent, from 213,232 to 322,010.

The new report highlights several troubling health disparities. For example, Asians and Pacific Islanders in Maryland were 2.8 times more likely to die from stomach cancer than Whites, and 1.6 times more likely to die from liver cancer than Whites. Non-Hispanic Asians in Maryland were 1.4 times more likely to be without health insurance and unable to afford to see a doctor, than their Non-Hispanic White counterparts. Asian or Pacific Islander women were 1.2 times more likely than White women in Maryland to receive late or no prenatal care.

"This report sheds light on the health status of one of Maryland's rising minority communities," said Dr. Joshua M. Sharfstein, DHMH Secretary. "Knowing their challenges, we can work to improve outcomes with targeted resources and guidance."

Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month is a celebration of the culture, traditions, and history of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States. DHMH is recognizing this month by raising awareness of disparities and engaging in health education and promotion among the Asian/Pacific Islander community in Maryland.

The Department plans to develop and release reports this year focusing on Hispanic, American Indian and African American health disparities. For information about the work of the DHMH Office Minority Health and Health Disparities, visit  http://dhmh.maryland.gov/mhhd/. To read the report, click on http://dhmh.maryland.gov/mhhd/Documents/Maryland%20API%20Data%20Report%202013.pdf

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