AANCART working with the Hmong Women's Heritage Association to educate and improve cervical cancer screening among Hmong women

pap screening testCervical cancer can largely be prevented through routine Pap testing. Hmong women have the lowest Pap screening rates of any racial or ethnic group in California. Working with the Hmong Women’s Heritage Association, AANCART developed a culturally-competent peer navigation program that provides education, help with screening, interpreting and translation services. Moon Chen Jr., a UC Davis professor of hematology and oncology who specializes in developing linguistically specific, culturally tailored and population-based health interventions, oversees AANCART.

Related Publication:
Cancer awareness to the Hmong: New education effort targets one of California's most vulnerable populations

Increasing HBV testing and improving access to care in Sacramento’s Asian American community

Hmong clinicChronic hepatitis B (CHB) is the leading cause of liver cancer worldwide. Asian-Americans are disproportionately affected by hepatitis B and liver cancer. An estimated 11,000 Asian-Americans in the Sacramento area are infected, and most go undiagnosed. Vaccination for CHB reduces the incidence of liver cancer, but does not benefit those already infected. Through the Sacramento Collaborative to Advance Testing and Care of Hepatitis B (SCrATCH B) program, UC Davis researchers are partnering with community-based organizations, county and state health departments and the National Cancer Institute’s designated National Center for Reducing Asian American Cancer Health Disparities/AANCART to identify at-risk individuals, promote testing and link those with CHB to care.

Asian American Cancer Education Study (AACES)

in-language eduactional materialsAccess to sufficient quantities of properly collected and annotated biospecimens that represent diverse populations for research increases the likelihood of developing personalized approaches for cancer treatment. A federal grant awarded to AANCART is allowing Asian American cancer patients to be educated on the importance of participating in cancer research through biospecimen donation and enrollment in cancer clinical trials. Program coordinators meet with Asian American patients prior to their appointments and offer an in-language (e.g., Cantonese, Mandarin, Korean, Hmong, or Vietnamese) one-on-one educational session about research participation.

Related publication:
Time, trust and transparency keys to minority biospecimen collection

Asian Pacific Islander Cancer Caucus (APICC)

Each quarter, AANCART hosts the Asian Pacific Islander Cancer Caucus meeting with guest speakers to engage students, faculty, staff and local community members on cancer-related issues among the Asian American community. Topics have included lung, liver and breast cancer, advance directives and Alzheimer’s disease. AANCART also awards mini-grants to support community cancer awareness projects. For the 2013-2014 grant period, grants were awarded to the Shifa Clinic, Vietnamese Cancer Awareness, Research and Education Society (VN CARES), California Northstate University Cancer Awareness, Research and Education Society (CNU CARES) and the Sacramento State University Hmong Health Alliance. Projects include tobacco cessation education, liver cancer prevention education and healthy lifestyle promotion.

AANCART Healthy Community Research Project

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is highly prevalent in both Asian men and women. Deaths due to CRC are unnecessary because CRC screening is proven to reduce mortality and is cost effective. Asian Americans have significantly lower CRC screening rates than non-Hispanic whites. Little is known about how to increase CRC screening rates among Asian Americans.

Specifically, AANCART investigators have demonstrated in an analysis from the 2001 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS) that Asian Americans age 50 and over had lower rates of ever having been screened by fecal occult blood testing (FOBT), sigmoidoscopy/colonoscopy, or either (38%, 42%, and 58%, respectively) than non-Hispanic whites (58%, 57%, and 75%). Screening rates were very low for Filipinos (39%, 37%, and 57%) and Koreans (23%, 38%, and 49%). Findings were similar for being up-to-date on screening. In the 2005 CHIS rates of receipt of any CRC test remained lower among all Asians (62%), Filipinos (66%), and Koreans (33%) compared to non-Hispanic whites (78%). From 2001 to 2005, receipt of CRC screening ever actually declined in prevalence among Koreans in California. Thus, our research project proposes to use CBPR methods to conduct a cluster randomized controlled trial (RCT) to evaluate the effectiveness of bilingual/bicultural lay health educators in increasing CRC screening rates among Filipino, Hmong, and Korean. It is an innovative project in its aim to understand if and how one intervention with many standardized components and some targeted elements can work across different Asian American populations, thus advancing the AANCART research agenda, which to date has evaluated interventions with one Asian group at a time.

FOBT Screening


*2001 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS) 2001 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS)

HIV Cancer Clinical Trials Education

AANCART has been awarded a two-year supplement to educate HIV-infected patients on clinical trials. This supplement builds upon AANCART’s success in developing educational and behavioral strategies to engage Asian-American communities in cancer clinical trials. Educational strategies are customized to optimize the awareness, accrual and adherence to HIV-related malignancies clinical trials in a culturally tailored manner for minority populations.

Past Studies and Projects

The AANCART pilot study program funds junior investigators to conduct research that furthers our understanding of cancer control in Asian American populations. Each study offers the investigator the opportunity to learn and apply research methods under the guidance of AANCART senior faculty, thus growing the pool of investigators with expertise in special populations research.

A list of all pilot projects can be found here (PDF)