April 22, 2014

WASHINGTON—Coming on the heels of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) first open enrollment period during which over 8 million Americans signed up, the White House announced that it will honor Action for Health Justice (AHJ) and eight of its partners as Champions of Change“Champions of Change”. The award recognizes and celebrates the leadership of these organizations in educating Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders (AAs and NHPIs) about the new health law.

“It is an honor and a privilege for our entire collaborative to be recognized, from our four national partners to the more than 70 community-based organizations and federally qualified health centers who have spent countless hours, hosted hundreds of events and personally assisted tens of thousands of people across the country during the past six months,” said Kathy Ko Chin, president and CEO of the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum. “This is a testament to our power and reach as a coordinated and committed force for health justice.”

AHJ was formed to ensure that eligible AAs and NHPIs are able to learn about their coverage options under the ACA and enroll. The initiative has nationwide reach and was formed by four national partners—the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF), Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO), Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC and Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Los Angeles.

“Thanks to our collective efforts, hard-to-reach AAs and NHPIs who would have been left out were able to get coverage during this first enrollment period and be a part of the law’s historic gains,” said Jeffery Caballero, executive director of AAPCHO. “None of this would have been possible without the support and dedication of our local partners.”

AHJ leverages the expertise and resources of national groups and coordinates with local community partners and health centers to maximize ACA outreach, education and enrollment for AAs and NHPIs across the nation.

“With community-tailored coordination, resources and assistance provided in 42 different languages, our partnership demonstrates the importance—and feasibility—of providing culturally and linguistically appropriate services,” said Mee Moua, president and executive director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC.

“California alone saw over 230,000 AAs and NHPIs enroll and we are proud that we contributed to that success,” said Stewart Kwoh, president and executive director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Los Angeles. “That many more families now have access to health coverage and can be part of a healthier America.”

AHJ partners Asian American Health Coalition/HOPE Clinic, Asian Health Coalition of Illinois, Asian Services In Action, Inc., Hmong American Partnership and Hmong National Development, International Community Health Services, Korean Community Services of Metropolitan New York, Inc., SEAMAAC and the South Asian Network will also be honored among the 11 White House champions.

Priscilla Huang, APIAHF policy director, will accept the award on behalf of AHJ at a ceremony this week. The event is closed to press, but will be live streamed at [www.whitehouse.gov/live]”www.whitehouse.gov/live” Thursday, April 24 at 1:30 EDT.

Action for Health Justice (AHJ) is a coalition of more than 70 Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander national and local community-based organizations and Federally Qualified Health Centers dedicated to educating, empowering and enrolling AAs and NHPIs in health coverage. ZeroDivide serves as the initiative’s technology counsel. AHJ’s partner organizations are active in the following 21 states: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas, Utah and Washington. For more information and health reform resources in English, Asian and Pacific Islander languages, visit www.apiahf.org. Visit www.healthcare.gov for more information about the Marketplace and how to enroll.