Cancer prevention and control among Asian and Pacific Islander Americans: Findings and recommendations

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16 Scopus citations


Cancer has become the leading cause of death for female Asian and Pacific Islander Americans. Although they have constituted the nation's fastest growing racial/ethnic population for the past two decades and will do so for the foreseeable future, cancer prevention for Asian and Pacific Islanders has been overlooked. The purpose of this review paper is to present a public health context with regard to cancer prevention and control for Asian and Pacific Islander Americans and to recommend action steps. The author employed Milne and Chambers' criteria for assessing the scientific quality of review articles and retrieved articles from systematic searches of four literature databases and other publications to write this review paper. Asian and Pacific Islanders are principally first-generation immigrants, and they are considerably heterogenous in terms of languages used and socioeconomic indicators. Aggregated data paint the appearance of a healthier profile than when data are disaggregated by ethnic group, gender, or immigration history. Inadequacies of data have been documented. Native Hawaiians already experience the highest cancer mortality rates for six sites. Chinese Americans lead with respect to liver cancer deaths. Mortality due to lung cancer will increase even more, because adult male smoking prevalence rates are much higher than those of the mainstream populations. The higher prevalence of hepatitis B among Asian and Pacific Islander Americans point toward even higher rates of liver cancer. Data on Asian and Pacific Islander American health must be collected deliberately and systematically. Ethnically specific data that are categorized further by gender would be most helpful. Effective cancer prevention and control initiatives must incorporate scientific validity, linguistic appropriateness, and cultural competence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1856-1864
Number of pages9
Issue number8 SUPPL.
StatePublished - Oct 15 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Asian and Pacific Islander
  • Cancer prevention
  • Hepatitis B
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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