Friday, February 25, 2011

February Wrap-Up

Breaking out of our winter shell, February has been a month of revitalization. At AAHI, the month kicked off with an exciting celebration of the Lunar New Year. On February 6th, the Chinese Culture and Community Service Center (CCACC) held a Lunar New Year event at Lakeforest Mall. The day was filled with cultural events. AAHI provided health education on various topics and conducted carbon monoxide screenings for the community.

Following the CCACC event, AAHI had a busy week. on Tuesday, February 8th, AAHI held a training for the Independent Outreach Project (IOP). Through this project AAHI aims outreach to the most isolated communities such as small businesses, and educate them about health issues and services available in the County.

The next morning, AAHI staffer Sanjana along with our new interns Patricia and Rebeka visited the Vietnamese American Senior Association (VASA) at Longbranch Community Center. At this gathering, Patricia, fluent in Vietnamese, presented in language to the Vietnamese seniors about hepatitis B and importance of prevention. She provided information about the upcoming hepatitis B screening, which was held on February 13th.

On February 16th, AAHI staff, Health Promoters and interns attended a very informative training at Holy Cross Hospital, Self-Advocacy and Local Health Delivery. To wrap up the month, AAHI held a health promoter meeting on February 24th. The meeting was very enlightening for AAHI staff and Health Promoters, as Sharla Quintanilla, Program Manager II presented on Medical Assistance and Entitlements Access.

A special thanks to all our partners for allowing us to attend these events and for continuing to work with AAHI in our efforts for building a healthier community.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Launch of Healthy Montgomery Website

Today, February 16th, marks the launch of the Health Montgomery Website. Below is an excerpt about the website taken directly from

"The Healthy Montgomery community health improvement process is a community-based effort to improve the health and well-being of Montgomery County residents. Healthy Montgomery is under the leadership of the Healthy Montgomery Steering Committee, which includes planners, policy makers, health and social service providers and community members. The community improvement process includes data collection, identification of areas for improvement, priority-setting, collaborative efforts to address the priority needs in Montgomery County and monitoring the success of the improvement efforts.

Central to the detailed data available for each objective on this website is the Healthy Montgomery CHIP Data Repository. The Data Repository was developed and implemented by both Behavioral Health and Crisis Services (BHCS) and Public Health Services (PHS), through an intradepartmental collaboration in the Department of Health and Human Services. Maintenance on the annual data files for births, deaths, inpatient utilization, and emergency room utilization is provided by PHS through a semi-automated system to build reports that enable estimates for standardized metrics to be derived for small sub-groups within the County (including combinations of gender, age, race, and ethnicity-specific category results)."

Monday, February 14, 2011

Hepatitis B Screening & Education Event

On Sunday February 13th, Viet Nam Medical Assistance Program (VNMAP) with the support of AAHI, held a hepatitis B screening and education day, titled "SMASH B". The event was a great success! Over 100 participants were able to receive hepatitis B screenings. The participants first attended a health education lecture conducted by Dr. Loc Le and then proceeded to get their screenings. Following the screening, the participants completed evaluation forms and then trickled over to AAHI's outreach table. AAHI provided health education on various topics including cancer, osteoporosis, hepatitis B and tobacco. As an interactive activity, AAHI brought a wheel of health education focusing on tobacco. The wheel was a big hit! Many participants enjoyed spinning the wheel and answering the questions, it was a wonderful method of engaging the participants. AAHI had the opportunity to educate most of the participants on the various health topics, it was a fulfilling event for AAHI staff, health promoters and interns!

A special thanks to VNMAP and all the volunteers for making this event such a success!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

February is American Heart Month

February is American Heart Month. What do you know about heart disease? Did you know that is is the second leading cause of death among Asian Americans? Did you know that there are certain conditions such as high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes and lifestyle choices such as physical inactivity and tobacco use that put you at greater risk for developing heart disease? Learn more about heart disease, signs, symptoms, and prevention through the Center of Disease Control and Preventions (CDC) website by clicking here.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Welcome Spring 2011 Interns!

AAHI is proud to welcome their new spring 2011 interns, Patricia Nguyen and Rebeka Sultana. Both interns are joining us from the University of Maryland's School of Public Health. We hope this internship provides great learning opportunities for the young professionals and we look forward to working closely with them over the course of this semester.

Patricia and Rebeka have written a few words about themselves:

Patricia Nguyen
Patricia Nguyen is a student intern at the University of Maryland, pursing a degree in behavioral and community health. She became interested in health education after taking a fundamental community health course at the University. She is fascinated by the whole aspect of health fairs and outreach events. She enjoys speaking with residents at health fairs and community events, especially with those who are different from her; people who have different values, attitudes, and prospective about life. For that reason, she can have a better perception of ones culture(s) because values and attitudes usually merge from ones own practices.
Interning at AAHI this spring, she hopes to build a better understanding of health problems among different ethnic groups of Asian Americans, as well as to learn new strategies in promoting health to each ethnic groups. In addition, she would like to spend a quality of time in research to gain an insight of new health concerns affecting Asian Americans.

Rebeka Sultana
Rebeka Sultana is a new intern at the Asian American Heath Initiative. She is a senior at the University of Maryland; College Park. She wants to learn about people, their needs, and most importantly how to help them to achieve a better quality of life. Since she loves being close to people, she decided to study in public health. The more she learns about health disparities in America, the more she is motivated to learn how to eliminate gaps between different racial/ ethnic groups. Therefore, she decided to intern at Asian American Health Initiative. She is looking forward to gaining hands on experiences in the Public health field and understaning public health in action.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Youth Job Fair

On Saturday, March 26th, there will be a youth job fair for ages 16-21. The job fair will be held in the Silver Spring Civic Building in downtown Silver Spring from 10am-2pm. Please share this valuable information with family and friends.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

AAHI Health Promoter Retreat

This past Saturday, January 29th, AAHI hosted a Health Promoter Retreat. After days of harsh weather conditions and power outages, several Health Promoters came out to make the event successful. The day was filled with various activities. To start off, Health Promoters engaged in a team building exercise. The activities following were a case study on how to plan successful outreach and outreach scenario role play, these activities were meant to stimulate dialogue surrounding outreach tactics and how AAHI can improve. The retreat was a great success, Health Promoters actively participated and it became a learning opportunity for both AAHI staff and Health Promoters.

A special thanks to all our Health Promoters who attended the event and to Betty Lam, Chief of Community Affairs for also attending and showing her support of our efforts.

To view photos, click the link below: