Type 2 diabetes is particularly devastating to the Asian population, and is associated with significant disability and early death. Diabetes mellitus currently affects 10 percent of the Asian-American population. Despite having a lower average body mass index than other populations, Asian Americans were found to be at least 60 percent more likely to develop type 2 diabetes due to preexisting genetic factors and environmental influences associated with “Westernization.” If left untreated, diabetes may lead to serious complications such as renal impairment, retinopathy, neuropathy, cardiovascular disease, amputations, and death. Therefore, the prevention, recognition, and timely treatment of diseases today will help reduce future health problems among the fastest-growing racial and ethnic group in the United States. However, Asian ethnic groups face language, cultural, economic, and institutional barriers that often limit their access to education and care.
This Tier I Pipeline Initiative will create a community and academic partnership that will collaboratively develop a PCORI Tier II research proposal to compare different approaches that will help Asian individuals with type 2 diabetes understand and self-manage the disease. The objectives of this project are: 1) to create an infrastructure that allows our community to discuss and prioritize the research focus of type 2 diabetes; 2) establish an advisory board to guide the project process for partnership building, community engagement, and strategic planning; 3) to strengthen communication channels between researchers and community members, and other stakeholders; 4) to develop a patient-centered comparative effectiveness research (CER) question for a PCORI Tier II research proposal designed by the partnership.