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Researchers to study COVID-19 vaccine experiences and beliefs in Filipino communities

AP Photo/David J. Phillip

A national nonprofit wants to better understand how Filipino communities across the country feel about COVID-19 vaccines.

Researchers from the Filipino Young Leaders Program, which seeks to advance Filipino voices through advocacy, said it’s important to have disaggregated data to show the pandemic’s impact on Filipino communities.

“To have this type of data … it helps not only with the resources, but it also helps in understanding the health information,” said Chachie Abara, who is helping survey researchers with local efforts. “It really helps highlight a lot of information in terms of how we can provide the support … in the continental U.S. and here in Hawaiʻi.”

Abara, who moved from the Philippines to Hawaiʻi as a child, pointed out that it’s also key to understand why some people are hesitant to get vaccinated.

In Hawaiʻi, Filipinos have been hit hard by the pandemic.

About 24% of those who died from COVID-19 identified as Filipino, according to the state Department of Health. That represents the highest share among all ethnic groups.

Also, about 17% of people in Hawaiʻi who tested positive for COVID-19 are Filipino, according to the state Health Department.

The 20-minute survey is conducted online and on the phone in English and Tagalog. It is open to Filipino Americans who are at least 18 years old, regardless of vaccination status.

For more information and to participate in the survey, click here.

Jayna Omaye was a culture and arts reporter at Hawaiʻi Public Radio.
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