Research Studies promoting the health of Southeast Asians

“All of Us” Research Program: CSEA has been selected to become a partner in the national “All of Us” Research Program, which seeks to enroll a million people throughout the US in a first-of-its-kind study that will provide longitudinal data to help researchers find better ways to prevent and cure diseases. The study will examine how individual attributes, genetics, and environmental factors impact our health outcomes. Participation of minority-serving agencies such as CSEA in this project is especially important because racial and ethnic minorities have been traditionally underrepresented in biomedical research, which often skews research findings.

As a National Community Engagement Partner in the All of Us Research Program, Asian Health Coalition established the Asian Engagement and Recruitment Core (ARC) with 17 community-based AANHPI-serving partner organizations. Together, ARC helps to shape and implement the All of Us strategy and roadmap to create culturally appropriate, cost-effective, and scalable education and outreach for Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders (AANHPIs).

Southeast Asian Data and Trends Analysis (SEA DATA) is a comprehensive data collection and analysis initiative of the Center for Southeast Asians (CSEA) in partnership with Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF). The overall goal of the SEA DATA project is to create a trusted source of information on the SEA community in Rhode Island to guide community development, inform policy decisions at local and state levels, and enable government agencies, nonprofits, and businesses to allocate resources where they are most needed.

SEA-DATA has produced an issue brief on the health status of SEAs in Rhode Island and the implications of the Affordable Care Act on this community; in addition, a Facts and Community Trends Report (FACTs) was released in the Spring of 2014 to highlight demographic, community, characteristics, and socioeconomic issues affecting the SEA community in Rhode Island.

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Health Issues in RI’s Southeast Asian Community:

  • Health Care Access & Utilization
  • Implications of the Affordable Care Act (ACA)
  • Cancer & Heart Disease are leading cause of death
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • PTSD, Depression & Anxiety
  • Hepatitis B
  • HBV


  • Implement data collection protocols to capture ethnicity -specific data on the SEA community.
  • Adopt alternative measures of access to healthcare.
  • Provide culturally and linguistically relevant educational resources to promote and educate the SEA community about the Affordable Care Act and new healthcare reform policies in RI.
  • Increase resources to educate SEA patients and clinicians who interact with them to screen for and inquire about lung and liver cancers, heart disease, and associated risk factors, and hepatitis B.

Brown University Southeast Asian Children’s Dietary Study

Poor diet quality is a significant and critical problem for Southeast Asian (SEA) children whose families came to the US as refugees [e.g., Hmong, Cambodian, Laotian, Vietnamese]. SEA children are disproportionately burdened by higher rates of obesity and increased risk of other diet-related chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes relative to other Asian subgroups, Whites, and other races. This study aims to engage 30 SEA families with children 6 to 11 to develop intervention strategies in family-based nutrition education, motivational, interviewing, descriptive dietary norms messaging, and healthy eating financial incentive coupons to improve children’s diet quality, body mass index and lower indicators of type 2 diabetes.