Health and Cancer Issues in the South Asian Community

2014-08-26 22:38:18 | BioPortfolio


The overall objectives of this study are to assess the unmet health and cancer needs of the South Asian population in the Greater Houston area and to determine barriers and other factors that affect health in this population, so that we can address these issues by partnering with other researchers, public health and community organizations. Major emphasis will be placed on cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and other relevant health concerns, such as the use of complementary and alternative therapies. The study will be conducted in two phases.


The first phase of the study will be to conduct interviews with community members and key informants, and focus groups to identify the salient health issues in the South Asian community. The information gleaned from the focus groups and interviews will guide us in designing a survey instrument that can be administered to a representative sample of the major South Asian groups (predominantly Asian Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi, and Sri Lankan) in the Greater Houston area.


Ultimately, the goal of the study is to conduct a survey in the South Asian community to collect quantitative, generalizable data on the health risks in this population and to use that information in developing educational and intervention programs that are culturally acceptable for these groups. Phase 2 is part of the overall plan of the South Asian study but will not be conducted within the scope of the present protocol. A separate protocol will be submitted to the IRB once all the data from Phase I become available.


If you agree to take part in this study, you will be either be interviewed or participate in a focus group.

For both the interview and the focus group, you will be asked to complete a form that asks questions about your ethnicity, gender, date and place of birth, education level, marital status, native language or language proficiency (your ability to speak different languages), years in the US, and the number of adults and children living in your household. It should take about 10 minutes to complete. You will not be asked to state any of this information aloud in the focus group.

If you are interviewed, you will be asked questions about your personal health and health history, your health practices, including your eating and physical activity habits, health knowledge, and where and how you receive health services and health education.

If you are assigned to a focus group, you will participate in one of 4-8 "focus" (discussion) groups. Each group will have 8-10 participants. A trained focus group moderator will also attend the session, as well as at least 1 member of the research staff. Some groups may have only males. The other groups may have only females.

The moderator may ask you to use your first name with the group. He/she will ask your focus group a series of questions for discussion. As a group, you will be asked to discuss your comments, opinions, and observations. The questions and discussion will relate to your health practices; your knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs about health; your sources of information about health; and any barriers (difficulties) you may have experienced when accessing health care services.

Focus group participants will also be given a draft of a health survey for South Asian Americans that is being developed by researchers. After reading the survey, you will be asked to provide feedback about the cultural relevance and appropriateness of the questions on the survey. In other words, you will discuss whether the questions seem to apply well to the South Asian American community. Researchers are also interested in hearing your feedback about how best to recruit South Asian Americans to complete the health survey.

The interviews will last about 30-40 minutes. Each focus group session will last about 2 hours. The interview and the focus group may be audiotaped so that the participants' responses may be written out and then studied by researchers.

After the interview or focus group session, your participation in this study will be over.

This is an investigational study. Up to 150 individuals will participate in this study. All will be enrolled at M. D. Anderson.

Study Design

Observational Model: Ecologic or Community, Time Perspective: Prospective




Focus Groups, Questionnaire, Interview


U.T.M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
United States




M.D. Anderson Cancer Center

Results (where available)

View Results


Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-08-26T22:38:18-0400

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