2021

Strength in Numbers: Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders building tools for health equity


The Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (NHPI) community, often hidden by a lack of disaggregated data, has been devastated by COVID-19.

Strength in Numbers: Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders Building Tools for Health Equity

The Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (NHPI) community, often hidden by a lack of disaggregated data, has been devastated by COVID-19; Dr. Ninez Ponce, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of health policy and management and director of the Fielding School’s UCLA Center for Health Policy Research (CHPR), leads efforts by CHPR’s NHPI Data Policy Lab to study and respond to these problems.

Over the last year, research has shown that COVID-19 has had a disproportionate impact on many racial and ethnic minorities. The impact on the Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (NHPI) community has been devastating, with NHPIs experiencing the highest COVID-19 case and death rates of any race and ethnicity in California. They are three times more likely to contract COVID-19 compared to white people and nearly twice as likely to die.

As part of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, the NHPI Data Policy Lab at the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research (CHPR) and the Regional Pacific Islander Taskforce (with support from the Bay Area Regional Health Inequities Initiative) have unveiled the California NHPI COVID-19 Data Dashboard and the Bay Area COVID-19 Pacific Islander Data Dashboard, two exciting tools that provide a closer look at COVID-19 case and death rates among NHPIs in California.

Policymakers, health officials, community leaders, and the public are invited to learn more about the California and Bay Area dashboards, as well as COVID-19 challenges continuously faced by the NHPI community and the need for resources to address them.

Calvin Chang, JD, data analytics director for the UCLA CHPR NHPI Data Policy Lab, will walk through a new dashboard which provides COVID-19 case and death rates by California county, and Winston Tseng, PhD, associate professor of research at UC Berkeley and the data committee lead for the Regional Pacific Islander Taskforce, will share the Bay Area COVID-19 Pacific Islander Data Dashboard.

Community partners, including the Pacific Islander Health Partnership (Orange County and SoCal), Empowering Pacific Islander Communities (EPIC), Pacific Islander Community Partnership (San Mateo and San Francisco), and Regional Pacific Islander Task Force (Tri-County), will highlight the continued needs in the regions of California they’re providing services for, how the data has been useful in their efforts, and opportunities for county/state agencies, funders, and policymakers to address equity in those regions.

UCLA CHPR's NHPI Data Policy Lab launched its first NHPI COVID-19 dashboard, which focused on statewide NHPI case and death rates across the United States, in August 2020. Since then, the NHPI Data Policy Lab has been featured in UCLA magazine, news media, academic journals, and received a $500,000 grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

by Elaiza Torralba


The UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, founded in 1961, is dedicated to enhancing the public's health by conducting innovative research, training future leaders and health professionals from diverse backgrounds, translating research into policy and practice, and serving our local communities and the communities of the nation and the world. The school has 631 students from 26 nations engaged in carrying out the vision of building healthy futures in greater Los Angeles, California, the nation and the world.

Faculty Referenced by this Article

Dr. Ninez Ponce
Ninez Ponce
Health Policy and Management
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Robert Brook
Health Policy and Management
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David Hayes-Bautista
Health Policy and Management
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Moira Inkelas
Moira Inkelas
Health Policy and Management
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Pamela Davidson
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Paul Fu, Jr.
Paul Fu, Jr.
Health Policy and Management
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Avram Kaplan
Avram Kaplan
Health Policy and Management
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Sangeeta Ahluwalia
Sangeeta Ahluwalia
Health Policy and Management
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Rosenstock
Linda Rosenstock
Environmental Health Sciences Health Policy and Management
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Yusuke Tsugawa
Yusuke Tsugawa
Health Policy and Management
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Barbara Berman
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Beth Glenn
Beth Glenn
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Jennifer Wortham
Jennifer Wortham
Health Policy and Management
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Image of Dr. Susan Ettner
Susan Ettner
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Frederick Zimmerman
Frederick Zimmerman
Health Policy and Management
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Isomi Miake-Lye
Isomi Miake-Lye
Health Policy and Management
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Brennan Spiegel
Health Policy and Management
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Emmeline Chuang
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Kristen Choi
Kristen Choi
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. John Lu
Z. John Lu
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Elizabeth (Becky) Yano
Elizabeth (Becky) Yano
Health Policy and Management
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Thomas D. Gordon
Health Policy and Management
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Michelle Keller
Michelle S. Keller

Dr. Michelle S. Keller is a health services researcher whose research focuses on the use and prescribing of high-risk medications.

Health Policy and Management
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Steven Teutsch
Health Policy and Management
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Jeanne Miranda
Jeanne Miranda
Health Policy and Management
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Julie A. Elginer

EMPH Academic Program Director with expertise in healthcare marketing, finance, and reproductive health policy, teaching in the EMPH, MPH, MHA program

Health Policy and Management
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Mangione, C
Carol Mangione
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Jonathan Fielding
Jonathan Fielding
Health Policy and Management
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Jose J. Escarce
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Felicia Hodge
Felicia Hodge
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Daniel Eisenberg
Daniel Eisenberg
Health Policy and Management
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Clifford Ko
Clifford Ko
Health Policy and Management
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Neal Halfon
Health Policy and Management
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Thomas Priselac
Health Policy and Management
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James Macinko
James Macinko

Professor of Community Health Sciences & Health Policy and Management, and Associate Dean for Research

Community Health Sciences Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Joann Elmore
Joann G. Elmore
Health Policy and Management
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Alan Tomines
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Alice Kuo
Alice Kuo
Health Policy and Management
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Comanor, Bill
William Comanor
Health Policy and Management
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Jack Needleman
Jack Needleman
Health Policy and Management
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Kadiyala, Srikanth
Srikanth Kadiyala
Health Policy and Management
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Nadereh Pourat
Nadereh Pourat
Health Policy and Management
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Annette Maxwell
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Dylan Roby
Dylan Roby
Health Policy and Management
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Warren Scott Comulada
Warren Scott Comulada
Health Policy and Management
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Leah Vriesman
Leah Vriesman
Health Policy and Management
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Corrina Moucheraud
Corrina Moucheraud
Health Policy and Management
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Patricia Ganz
Patricia Ganz
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Xi Zhu
Xi Zhu
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Naomi Zewde
Naomi Zewde
Health Policy and Management
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Aronberg, Sandra
Sandra Aronberg
Health Policy and Management
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Olivia Jung
Olivia Jung
Health Policy and Management
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Jody Heymann
Jody Heymann
Epidemiology Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Arturo Vargas Bustamante
Arturo Vargas Bustamante
Health Policy and Management
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Paul Chung
Paul Chung
Health Policy and Management
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Ron Andersen

Dr. Ron Andersen is the Wasserman Professor Emeritus in the UCLA Departments of Health Policy and Management.

Health Policy and Management
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Lori Pelliccioni
Health Policy and Management
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Robert Kaplan
Robert Kaplan
Health Policy and Management
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Ron D. Hays
Ron D. Hays

@UCLA since 1997

Health Policy and Management
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Dr. William McCarthy
William J. McCarthy
Health Policy and Management
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Diana Hilberman
Diana Hilberman
Health Policy and Management
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Mark Litwin
Health Policy and Management
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Jean Balgrosky
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Stephanie Taylor
Stephanie L. Taylor

Nationally recognized health services researcher and sociomedical scientist with 25+ years' experience in effectiveness and implementation research.

Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Risha Gidwani
Risha Gidwani
Health Policy and Management
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Laura Erskine
Laura Erskine
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Thomas Rice
Thomas Rice
Health Policy and Management
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Vickie Mays
Vickie Mays
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Anthony Schiff
Anthony Hunter Schiff
Health Policy and Management
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Ty Robbins
Health Policy and Management
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Roshan Bastani Headshot
Roshan Bastani
Health Policy and Management
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Burt Cowgill
Burt Cowgill
Health Policy and Management
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Michael Ong
Michael Ong
Health Policy and Management
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Gerald Kominski
Gerald Kominski
Health Policy and Management
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Galper, Michael
Michael Galper
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Aria Fallah
Aria Fallah
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Lillian Gelberg
Lillian Gelberg
Health Policy and Management
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Arlene Fink
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Samuel Sessions
Samuel Sessions
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Yvonne Flores
Yvonne Flores
Health Policy and Management
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Emily Abel
Emily Abel
Health Policy and Management
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Dr. Kenneth Wells
Kenneth Wells
Health Policy and Management
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Freund, Deborah
Deborah Anne Freund
Health Policy and Management
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