2021

UCLA awarded grant from Office of Minority Health to continue groundbreaking work through Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Data Policy Lab


The UCLA Fielding School of Public Health’s UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, led by Dr. Ninez Ponce has been awarded a $250,000 grant.

native hAWAIIAN AND PACIFIC ISLANDER (nhpi) DATA POLICY LAB

Dr. Ninez Ponce, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of health policy and management, received a one-year $250,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Minority Health to serve as a data intermediary, helping to bridge the gap between community-based organizations and data on social determinants of health. Ponce serves as director of the Fielding School's UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and principal investigator of the center’s California Health Interview Survey,

Under the grant, a team at the center’s Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (NHPI) Data Policy Lab will create a tool to break down the community’s barriers to accessing and utilizing disaggregated data, or data which are broken down by racial and ethnic subgroups, to inform advocacy efforts and programs. Historically, data on the NHPI community are “hidden” because it is absorbed into other racial groups when data are reported. The lab was launched in August 2020 and aimed to address striking gaps within COVID-19 data and research for NHPIs, including adding more states to report disaggregated cases. Since its founding, the lab team has expanded its project reach to beyond the pandemic. The new project will help identify and parse disaggregated data specific to the community and provide community-based organizations serving the NHPI community with a user-friendly health data access tool featuring social determinants of health data.

“The grant will enable the NHPI Data Policy Lab team to bring much-needed data to organizations who are providing a breadth of on-the-ground resources and aid — in places where they live, work, go to school, and socialize — to this historically underserved community,” Ponce said.

During the grant period, the lab will survey these community-based organizations across California about their data use and needs, then construct a user-friendly data platform that brings together key data sources on social determinants of health. The project will further create trainings on data access and analysis to ensure the community gains access that was previously reserved for communities that have not faced the past data barriers.

“As a Sāmoan woman in public health, one of the most rewarding aspects of the lab has been working with community organizations, and this grant will help us continue our dedicated efforts to healing the community not only from the pandemic, but other long-standing health issues,” said Karla Thomas, policy director and co-founder of the NHPI Data Policy Lab and UCLA alumna.

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 761 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
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Dr. Jennifer Wortham
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Warren Scott Comulada
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Barbara Berman
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Neal Halfon
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Emily Abel
Emily Abel
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Dr. Alice Kuo
Alice Kuo
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Dr. Thomas Rice
Thomas Rice
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Sangeeta Ahluwalia
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Jose J. Escarce
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Lori Pelliccioni
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Arlene Fink
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Kadiyala, Srikanth
Srikanth Kadiyala
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Dr. Beth Glenn
Beth Glenn
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Steven Teutsch
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Ron Andersen

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

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Avram Kaplan
Avram Kaplan
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Yusuke Tsugawa
Yusuke Tsugawa
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Dr. Kenneth Wells
Kenneth Wells
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Freund, Deborah
Deborah Anne Freund
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Dr. Yvonne Flores
Yvonne Flores
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Emmeline Chuang
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Dr. Samuel Sessions
Samuel Sessions
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Susan Ettner
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Laura Erskine
Laura Erskine
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Nadereh Pourat
Nadereh Pourat
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Pamela Davidson
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Paul Chung
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Jeanne Miranda
Jeanne Miranda
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Dr. Risha Gidwani
Risha Gidwani
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Dr. Arturo Vargas Bustamante
Arturo Vargas Bustamante
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Leah Vriesman
Leah Vriesman
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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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Diana Hilberman
Diana Hilberman
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Alan Tomines
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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.

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Dr. Xi Zhu
Xi Zhu
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Jack Needleman
Jack Needleman
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Annette Maxwell
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Sandra Aronberg
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Moira Inkelas
Moira Inkelas
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Julie A. Elginer

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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.

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Galper, Michael
Michael Galper
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Jean Balgrosky
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Dr. Aria Fallah
Aria Fallah
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Dr. Kristen Choi
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Dr. Paul Fu, Jr.
Paul Fu, Jr.
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Jody Heymann
Jody Heymann
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Mangione, C
Carol Mangione
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Thomas Priselac
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Gerald Kominski
Gerald Kominski
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Mark Litwin
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Ron D. Hays
Ron D. Hays

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Daniel Eisenberg
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William J. McCarthy
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Isomi Miake-Lye
Isomi Miake-Lye
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Dr. Felicia Hodge
Felicia Hodge
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Dr. Lillian Gelberg
Lillian Gelberg
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Burt Cowgill
Burt Cowgill
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Olivia Jung
Olivia Jung
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David Hayes-Bautista
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Patricia Ganz
Patricia Ganz
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Dr. Elizabeth (Becky) Yano
Elizabeth (Becky) Yano
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Vickie Mays
Vickie Mays
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Dr. John Lu
Z. John Lu
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Linda Rosenstock
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Michael Ong
Michael Ong
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Comanor, Bill
William Comanor
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Dr. Frederick Zimmerman
Frederick Zimmerman
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Robert Kaplan
Robert Kaplan
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Roshan Bastani
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Corrina Moucheraud
Corrina Moucheraud
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Brennan Spiegel
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Robert Brook
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Ty Robbins
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Clifford Ko
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Anthony Hunter Schiff
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