CDC grant for Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) Initiative
MINNEAPOLIS (April 2, 2015) — On Sept. 25, CDC announced new funding awards, supported in part by the Affordable Care Act, to all 50 states and D.C. to support cross-cutting programs to prevent and control chronic diseases—the leading causes of death and disability in the United States.
Chronic diseases are responsible for 7 of 10 deaths among Americans each year, and they account for more than 80 percent of the $2.7 trillion our nation spends annually on medical care. In all, 193 awards totaling nearly $212 million (first-year funding) are going to states, large and small cities and counties, tribes and tribal organizations, and national and community organizations. Minnesota organizations received three awards, and the Asian Media Access grant came under CDC’s Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) Initiative.
Ange Hwang, Ph.D., executive director, Asian Media Access, said that in the past 30 years, the number of children who are overweight in the United States has tripled to 15 percent. Today, America is proven to be at its peak of the Obesity epidemic. Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) is no exception, with three times more children overweight than were in the 1980s.
“Often childhood obesity is addressed as a public health issue, but it is also as a cultural issue,” Hwang said. “We are so affected by our cultures because it shapes our life-styles, and the food we eat. However, less emphasis is putting on adapting different culture models and values when promoting Healthy Eating and Physical Exercise.”
“Childhood obesity is not just the problem of the food system, or the only struggle among low-income families, it’s also a cultural related problem,” Hwang added. “And it is essential that we develop a “Bicultural Healthy Living” concept to comprehensively address those problems AAPIs and other people of color faced.”
Project PHILIP (Public Health Initiative through Language, Information, and Participation), is led by Asian Media Access, along with the Multi-cultural Community Alliance (MCCA) Coalition, with a wide range of disciplines and culturally- and linguistically-appropriate agencies. AMA embarks on this new Initiative to strategically organize for implementation of Policy, System, and Environmental (PSE) strategies that can effectively eliminate overweight/obesity and hypertension among People of Color in North Minneapolis.
Minneapolis has the highest minority number among all cities in Minnesota, at around 151,928. Project PHILIP is designed to reach approximately 75 percent or more of the priority populations in North Minneapolis (the 30,770 of People of Color), for an estimated reach of 26,000 individuals. As we have identified the risk factors for health disparities for People of Color, they are:
• Smoking, Drinking and Dietary Changes
• Limited Physical Exercises; and
• Environmental Factors, such as: Poverty, Cultural Barriers and Limited English Proficiency.
Project PHILIP is designed as a comprehensive initiative that include multiple sectors, with innovative strategies that impact a large proportion of the selected intervention populations – African American/African-born; and Asian Americans, in a variety of settings (homes, work places, schools and communities).
Our selected strategies will focus on:
• Building capacity to learn/develop/implement the evidence-based Policy, System, and Environmental (PSE) strategies that best support People of Color with a bicultural healthy living approach; and
• Developing multimedia/multi-lingual materials focusing on CDC’s three “Strategic Directions (tobacco-free living, active living and healthy eating, high impact evidence-based clinical and other preventive services).
For more information about Project PHILIP and AMA’s effort on “Bicultural Healthy Living,” please contact: [email protected], 612-376-7715.