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California Report: AAPIs Disproportionately Burdened By Higher Rates of Liver Cancer

April 28, 2009

Just published in April 2009, the The State of Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Health In California Report, a report from the California Asian Pacific Islander Joint Legislative Caucus, authored by scholars from the University of California AAPI Policy Multi-Campus Research Program Health Work Group, provides a wealth of data and analysis about health challenges in the diverse API community in California.

From the executive summary: "Liver cancer disproportionately strikes the AANHPI population at such alarmingly high rates that the cancer burden levied on AANHPIs is unmatched by other racial/ethnic health disparities in the U.S. "

Page 24 begins a section on cancer screening, including this important health policy challenge: "Despite the importance of cancer screenings in detecting and preventing cancer, Asian Americans often report screening rates far below that of other racial/ethnic groups. "

Pages 38 to 41 focus on infectious diseases hepatitis B and tuberculosis, and page 41 begins a section on cancers, particularly liver cancer in the diverse API community. The following statistics from page 44 remind us of the urgency of the work of CalHEP and allies in pushing policymakers to support widened screening opportunities for all Californians, especially hard-hit communities of API who are not receiving the screening they need to prevent liver cancer.

MEN
• Laotian, Vietnamese, Samoan, and Cambodian men have the highest liver cancer incidence rates in the U.S.
• Among Asian American subgroups by sex, Vietnamese, Samoan, Korean, and Chinese men have the highest liver cancer mortality rates in the U.S.
• Liver cancer incidence rates for Laotian, Vietnamese, Samoan, and Cambodian American men are 11.9, 8.3, 8.1, and 7.3 times higher than White men in the U.S.
• Liver cancer mortality rates for Vietnamese, Samoan, Korean, and Chinese American men are 3.3 to 5.5 times higher than White men in the U.S.

WOMEN
• Asian American women also have substantially higher rates of liver cancer incidence than White women in the U.S.
• Most Asian American women also have substantially higher liver cancer mortality rates than White women in the U.S.
• Among Asian American women, Laotian, Vietnamese, Korean, and Cambodian women have the highest liver cancer incidence rates.
• Among Asian American women, Korean, Vietnamese, Chinese, and Japanese women have the highest liver cancer mortality rates.
• Liver cancer incidence rates for Laotian, Vietnamese, Korean, and Cambodian women are 8.9, 6.5, 5.5, and 5.4 times higher than White women in the U.S.
• Liver cancer mortality rates for Korean, Vietnamese, Chinese, and Japanese women are 2.4 to 4.3 times higher than White women in the U.S.

Download full report at http://democrats.assembly.ca.gov/members/a49/pdf/AANHPI_report_091.pdf