Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

During May, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Office of Minority Health recognizes Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month as part of our commitment to understanding the health needs of this diverse population.

Included in the Asians and Native Hawaiians or Other Pacific Islanders (Asian and NHOPI) population is a wide variety of subgroups, each with their own unique health disparities. These disparities can also be observed when comparing Asian Medicare beneficiaries to Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders beneficiaries. We are committed to making sure these vulnerable populations can effectively get and use health care through policy and equity initiatives.

National Mental Health Month

May is also National Mental Health Month, which gives CMS OMH an opportunity to highlight the importance of mental health for the Asian and NHOPI communities as these communities are generally less likely to seek professional help for mental health issues due to barriers such as accessing care because of linguistic, cultural, or insurance-related obstacles. Recent increases in anti-Asian discrimination and violence compounded with other pandemic-related stressors have severely impacted the Asian American community furthering the need to bring attention to these issues.

This month allows CMS OMH to continue to strive towards our goal of improving the health of all minority populations. Below are resources that you can share with your patients during this month and more.