Survey Evaluates Health Needs of American Indians Living in Fresno
About two-thirds of American Indians in Fresno are overweight and one-third have diabetes, according to a survey released Saturday by the Fresno Native American Health Center, the Fresno Bee reports. The findings are based on surveys completed by about 95 American Indians and their families in Fresno two months ago.
The survey indicated that transportation to physician appointments or medical facilities was a principal concern for respondents, with 90% of respondents indicating a desire for FNAHC to provide transportation to the center. About half of respondents said they currently use public transportation.
The survey also found that more than half of respondents' annual incomes did not exceed $15,000. Those who responded to the survey -- 70% of whom were women -- were given a "$20 food bag" as an incentive for filling out the questionnaire, according to the Bee.
The survey was funded in part by a one-time $23,000 grant from the California Endowment. Before the survey, no group had collected data to assess the health needs of the nearly 12,000 American Indians living in Fresno, according to Terrance Tovar, who manages FNAHC's outreach program.
According to the Bee, the survey and other upcoming studies "should help the Native American center decide how best to serve a patient population that represents 32 tribal nations, including the Cherokee and Choctaw of Oklahoma, the Crow tribe of Montana, the Hopi and Pascua Yaqui tribes of Arizona and descendants from numerous California tribes."
Tovar said further research is needed to evaluate how the survey results will affect the center's operations (Galvan, Fresno Bee, 2/27).