American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

Epidemiology Across Cultures: Asian/Pacific Islander Populations

Demographics | Health Statistics | Educational Statistics | Resources

Demographics

The term "Asian" refers to people having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent (for example, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and Vietnam). Asian groups are not limited to nationalities, but include ethnic terms, as well. The term "native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander" refers to people who are descended from any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands. Pacific Islanders include diverse populations that differ in language and culture. They are of Polynesian, Micronesian, and Melanesian cultural backgrounds. The 2006–2008 American Community Survey estimates that the United States population was 301.2 million. Of the total, 13.2 million, or 4.4 percent, reported Asian. Of the total 301.2 million United States population, 446,164 or 0.1 percent, reported Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander.  [1]

Health Statistics

Incidence and Prevalence of Diseases

AIDS/HIV, number of 37,331 newly reported cases in 2005 [2]

417

Coronary Heart Disease [3]

2.9%

Diabetes Mellitus [3]

8.0%

Stroke [3]

1.8%

Risk Factors

Hypertension [3]

21.0%

Obesity (BMI 30+) [3]

9.4%

Total Cholesterol of 240 mg/dL+5 [3]

29.2%

Educational Statistics

According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, approximately 4.7% of students enrolled in elementary and secondary schools in the Fall of 2006 were Asian or Pacific Islander. [4]

Special Education Identification (Fall 2004) [5]

Percentage of students ages 6 through 21 receiving special education services for given disability category

 

% of Asian/Pacific Islander

Specific Learning Disabilities

1.73

Speech or Language Impairment

1.24

Mental Retardation

0.41

Emotional Disturbance

0.21

Multiple Disabilities

0.12

Hearing Impairment

0.13

Orthopedic Impairment

0.08

Other Health Impairment

0.27

Visual Impairment

0.04

Autism

0.31

Deaf-Blindness

0.00

Traumatic Brain Injury

0.02

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[1] U.S. Census Bureau. (2008)  2006–2008 American community survey. Retrieved January 5, 2010 from http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/DTTable?_bm=y&-geo_id=01000US&-ds_name=ACS_2008_3YR_G00_&-redoLog=false&-mt_name=ACS_2008_3YR_G2000_B02001.

[2] Center for Disease Control and Population. (2008). "Fact Sheet: HIV/AIDS among Asians and Pacific Islanders." Retrieved January 5, 2010 from http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/resources/factsheets/API.htm.

[3] American Heart Association. (2009). Heart disease and stroke statistics—2010 update. Dallas: American Heart Association.

[4] Digest of Education Statistics. (2008). "Percentage distribution of enrollment in public elementary and secondary school, by race/ethnicity and state: Fall 1996 and Fall 2006." Retrieved January 5, 2010 from http://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d08/tables/dt08_041.asp

[5] U.S Department of Education, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, Office of Special Education Programs. (2009). 28th Annual Report to Congress on the Implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Act, 2006, vol. 1, Washington DC.

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