PIHP continues to partner with other small NHPI community agencies to provide the critical support for many NHPI clients navigating the fragmented, hostile medical services available. One of the elder leaders in the Marshallese community is experiencing a medical crisis at a premiere medical center in Orange County, CA. The center does not have any Marshallese translators on staff to help provide services, inform consent, advance directive, or critical medical information. Our client is an active leader in the Marshallese community for over past 25 years and is now with end stage renal failure due to lifelong diabetes, renal dialysis, blind and a widow. She faces end of life care without adequate linguistic, cultural, medical support here in California, continuing the experience for many of our legal, resident Marshallese who have migrated to the US due to nuclear testing and exposure in the Pacific working and contributing to the California economy over the past 20-30 years.
Health Care reform is important to me because PIHP clients will be able to get information about my health coverage options in a linguistically and culturally appropriate manner. Health care reform also invests in the community health workforce, meaning that there will be more organizations like PIHP to help Pacific Islander communities navigate the health care system and obtain information about health. ACA provides opportunity to build community capacity for navigators, community health workers/educators to facilitate community members through health care services.