This article was originally published here
Asian Pac Isl Nurs J. 2021;5(4):248-250. doi: 10.31372/20200504.1124.
The purpose of this paper is to provide a brief summary of mental health issues among Asian and Pacific Islander (API) communities in the U.S. APIs include individuals from Far East Asia (e.g., Korea, China), Central Asia (e.g., Afghanistan, Uzbekistan), South Asia (e.g., India, Pakistan), South East Asia (e.g., Thailand, Philippines), Western Asia (e.g., Iran, Saudi Arabia), and Pacific islands (e.g., Hawaii, Samoa, Mariana island, Fiji, Palau, French Polynesia, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, New Zealand, Tokelau islands, Niue, and Cook Islands). Collectively they speak more than one hundred languages and dialects. Such a diversity across the API community presents unique challenges and opportunities for research, education, and practice. The existing body of literature on mental health issues in API communities is marred by the lack of high-quality data and insufficient degrees of disaggregation. Such a knowledge gap hindered our ability to develop culturally and linguistically tailored interventions, and in turn, API communities have experienced mental health disparities and mental health services’ disparities. To move the field forward, future research effort with APIs should focus on articulating variations across different API subgroups, identifying what explains such variations, and examining the implications of such variations to research, practice, education, and policy.