Hawaii State Senate Passes Resolution to “Screen at 23!”
Public Health Department to Endorse Campaign to Eliminate Diabetes Disparities in Asian Americans
Honolulu, HI, March 22, Diabetes “Alert Day” - Today at the Hawaii State Capitol, the Hawaii State Legislature voted to pass Joint Resolution S.R. 23, making Hawaii the first state to formally adopt the diabetes screening guidelines for Asian Americans set forth by the American Diabetes Association (ADA,) and to endorse the “Screen at 23” campaign, a national campaign coordinated by the National Council of Asian Pacific Islander Physicians (NCAPIP) and the Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Diabetes Coalition to help unmask the hidden cases of diabetes among Asian Americans, over half of whom are undiagnosed. The resolution will increase efforts across Hawaii’s public and private health sectors to screen for type 2 diabetes in Asian Americans at a body mass index (BMI) of 23.
Currently, over 50% of Asian Americans with diabetes remain undiagnosed according to the National Institutes of Health and Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and the number with undiagnosed prediabetes is even higher. Of these, a significant portion of Asian Americans at risk for prediabetes or diabetes appear to be a “healthy weight” and aren’t being screened. The general rule for some time has been that if you have a body mass index below 25, you aren’t at risk for diabetes.
However, research on Asian Americans proves different. The ADA, CDC, and United States Preventive Services Task Force have all recently acknowledged that Asian Americans are at risk for, and need to be screened at a lower body mass index, and 23 is the number. "The science shows that when it comes to diabetes, Asian Americans ARE different; guidelines are now reflecting this reality, and screening practices must change to reflect these guidelines," shared Dr. Ho Luong Tran, President & CEO of NCAPIP.
In Hawaii, where close to half of the population is of Asian American descent, screening at 23 would reveal more than 10,000 additional cases of diabetes and more than 30,000 new cases of prediabetes and allow treatment to begin, interventions occur before damaging associated conditions develop or worsen, or make diabetes prevention possible. Dr. Edward A. Chow, co-chair of the AANHPI Diabetes Coalition said, "In October, San Francisco was the first county in the United States to adopt a resolution to increase awareness and screen Asian Americans for diabetes at a BMI of 23. Hawaii has the highest percentage of Asian Americans among its populace in the nation; this Diabetes Alert Day resolution comes at the perfect time and place to continue to raise awareness through ‘Screen at 23'.”
The Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Diabetes Coalition is a coalition of twenty national and local organizations dedicated to advancing the study and treatment of diabetes among AANHPI, eliminating diabetes disparities among AANHPI communities, and alleviating the diabetes burden overall. The overarching mission of the National Council of Asian Pacific Islander Physician is to improve the health of Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) patients and communities, and by addressing the health inequities present in that population, contributing to more optimal health for all patients.
To find out more about the campaign and how to help, please email David Hawks at email@example.com, or call at 202-441-1192, or go to Screenat23.org.