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El Camino begins Chinese outreach campaign

Original post made on Feb 9, 2011

El Camino Hospital recently announced the launch of an initiative focused solely on Silicon Valley's Chinese community -- a population disproportionately affected by certain deadly diseases and that is not always best served by Western cultural and medical practices.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, February 9, 2011, 11:31 AM

Comments (23)

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Posted by Doctor Killjoy
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Feb 9, 2011 at 4:46 pm

As long as *Chinese* taxpayers are paying for these outreach programs, I have no problem with it. Otherwise, hands off my tax dollars, if you please.


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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Feb 9, 2011 at 7:34 pm

"As long as *Chinese* taxpayers are paying for these outreach programs, I have no problem with it. Otherwise, hands off my tax dollars, if you please. "

---------------

The "Dr." in your alias must be for looks only, if you missed the following in the article:

"While the majority of Chinese-speaking residents in El Camino Hospital's service area have health insurance, they lack access to culturally appropriate and language-specific providers," Fung said in an official release about the initiative. "This often creates obstacles to their ability to seek needed preventive care, diagnosis and treatment."

Ignorance, prejudice, and selfishness know no racial or social boundaries, as you have so expeditiously proven.


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Posted by Observer
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Feb 9, 2011 at 8:27 pm

"culturally appropriate and language-specific providers" sound pretty racist alone. The Chinese community seems to think that only Chinese MDs can help them. How about just providing them translators.

"The Chinese Health Initiative aims to expand the number of Cantonese- and Mandarin-speaking doctors in the hospital's physician network." Translated: Only Chinese need apply.

My father was an immigrant MD back in the 60s and everyone loved him, no matter what the race nor their background, they were just glad to see a doctor. He was one of many immigrant doctors from that time from all over the world. They didn't care where he was from or how heavy his accent was. Many were war veterans and American to the core. Turn the tables and the Chinese Americans can only get along with Chinese MDs/providers. That's pretty twisted and very un-American.


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Posted by RealityRdr
a resident of Monta Loma
on Feb 9, 2011 at 11:17 pm

Dear Observer, I think you missed the point. As the number of people losing their health insurance grow due to rising medical cost, any hospital CEO knows that you need to go court the people with the $$ if you are to survive. You don't see them training & hiring a troop of people to serve the Spanish speaking day laborers all along El Camino Real. It's the people who in this case happens to be "Chinese-speaking residents with health insurance". Forget about accents and twist, this is the all-American way of selling yourself to make a $.

Incidentally, "Dr. Killjoy", you better hope that more of these insured & paying customers are attracted to that hospital and in the process help keep it running. Who knows, if you lose your insurance you would not be welcomed there.


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Posted by Observer
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Feb 10, 2011 at 2:32 am

Good point. I hadn't stop to consider that this was all about money. And here I thought this was supposed to be a "community hosptial" where Western medical procedures were practiced regardless of your cultural backgound, skin color, or language spoken.


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Posted by Roni
a resident of another community
on Feb 10, 2011 at 8:28 am

Rock St. Native

Some of the comments above would be hilarious if they weren't so sad. It is at once amazing, but at the same time totally predictable, given a far left-leaning state's obsessive preoccupation with 'cultural sensitivity'.

At the turn of the last century, when a flood of Europeans arrived on these shores, their primary goal was to assimilate and Become AMERICANS. Not 'Chinese-Americans', 'Asian-Americans', 'Irish-American' or 'Italian-American', but plain 'old 'American'. Everyone has their 'culture', but there is a culture here called the American culture. It is the culture of Individualism, Liberty and self-reliance - not coincidentally, the same 'culture' that founded the nation in the first place.

Can some of you grasp that concept, or is your psyche Ruled by 'Diversity', rather than UNITY...?

Your God of 'cultural-sensitivity' and 'Diversity' has turned communities into breeding grounds of Balkanization, instead of fertile grounds of assimilation. The quote below sums it up rather succinctly.
________________________

"With every ethnic group there are certain ways people like to be cared for and certain things they want when they are in a hospital," she said. El Camino is doing its best to oblige the Chinese community in ways both ethereal and everyday."





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Posted by CC
a resident of Shoreline West
on Feb 10, 2011 at 8:43 am

Let's keep in mind that the most of the Chinese in silicon valley are not low income health care free riders.

Let's also keep in mind 5% of cancer patient can rack up more medical bills than the rest of the 99% of the insured people.

Prevent the hard working Chinese people from getting cancer will save everyone money (on the insurence premium).

El Camino hospital needs income source, and the Chinese people needs little help. This program created is a win-win approach. let's not pick on the Chinese.


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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Feb 10, 2011 at 9:16 am

"Good point. I hadn't stop to consider that this was all about money. And here I thought this was supposed to be a "community hosptial" where Western medical procedures were practiced regardless of your cultural backgound, skin color, or language spoken. "

--------------

Huh? El Camino is a privately run, for-profit hospital, and no where in the article is this initiative presented as a community service.

It's true that the best things in life are free, but that doesn't mean ALL things in life are.

Unfortunately, this simple fact doesn't prevent individuals from feeling ENTITLED to have everything free.


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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Feb 10, 2011 at 9:37 am

"Your God of 'cultural-sensitivity' and 'Diversity' has turned communities into breeding grounds of Balkanization, instead of fertile grounds of assimilation. The quote below sums it up rather succinctly. "

-------------

I think you're missing the mark on this on. I think RealityRdr has it right, this is a pure and simple marketing strategy. El Camino Hospital is simply tailoring a program to target an unmet market need, nothing more capitalistic and American than that.

Besides, I disagree with your definition of what it is to be "American". The unique and paradoxical position of being an "American" is that although you are the citizen of one country, America celebrates the fact that each of us has 2 (or more) countries that our descendants have called home, and we bring those values and customs with us to form part of what being American truly is.

Being American is what unifies us its true, but being Chinese/Fill in the blank American is what distinguishes us.


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Posted by Jean
a resident of another community
on Feb 10, 2011 at 11:12 am

Everybody and his/her ancestors came from 'someplace else' unless they are Native Americans waaaay back. I am of German and Italian heritage. I do not run around wearing a German-style dirndl dress or a Tyrolean hat. My husband does not wear a kilt. I am American down to the soles of my feet. But the Asian, particularly Chinese, community is isolating itself from the rest and it's happening all over. Demanding Mandarin Immersion program and isolating themselves from anything non-Asian in the neighborhoods - gatherings etc. Parties, picnics. We have Asian neighbors who have lived here for years - drive in the driveway, open garage door, go in, never see them. They don't even talk to each other!! children NEVER play outside. Nannies, tutors, etc. Won't even give out telephone # for neighborhood watch group. Give me a break.


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Posted by AJ
a resident of Waverly Park
on Feb 10, 2011 at 12:05 pm

Right, let's all get on board the Anglo-conformity train! You all Asians, and blacks, and Hispanics, can get accepted by us Real Americans if you just act like we do!

Speaking more seriously now, I think what many people on this board fail to recognize is that assimilation in this country is a LOT easier prospect if you look the part (i.e. Caucasian). Not to denigrate the hard work put in by European immigrants to assimilate, but all you have to do in this case is act American and you will be accepted.

I don't think Italian immigrants were ever restricted as a race from entering this country (try Googling Chinese Exclusion Act).

I don't think German Americans were ever interred during World War II.

I don't think that any European American scientist was prosecuted for stealing government secrets primarily on the basis of his former nationality, like Wen Ho Lee was.

Assimilationists, let me ask you this. If current population trends continue, non-Hispanic whites are predicted to become a minority in the U.S. by 2050. When that happens, are *you* going to assimilate to *our* way of life? Or are you going to isolate yourselves in your own groups as the last "True Americans"?


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Posted by AJ
a resident of Waverly Park
on Feb 10, 2011 at 12:06 pm

P.S. Apologies for the lousy formatting of my previous message. It looked correct on my screen until I posted it.


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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Feb 10, 2011 at 1:59 pm

"Everybody and his/her ancestors came from 'someplace else' unless they are Native Americans waaaay back. I am of German and Italian heritage. I do not run around wearing a German-style dirndl dress or a Tyrolean hat. My husband does not wear a kilt. I am American down to the soles of my feet. But the Asian, particularly Chinese, community is isolating itself from the rest and it's happening all over. Demanding Mandarin Immersion program and isolating themselves from anything non-Asian in the neighborhoods - gatherings etc. Parties, picnics. We have Asian neighbors who have lived here for years - drive in the driveway, open garage door, go in, never see them. They don't even talk to each other!! children NEVER play outside. Nannies, tutors, etc. Won't even give out telephone # for neighborhood watch group. Give me a break."

-------------

So based on your definition, a true "American" is one who:

1. One who wears white t-shirts and khakis, preferably Dockers.

2. Brings apple pie over to the neighbors.

3. Doesn't use their garage to park cars.

4. Allows their kids to play outside.

5. Shares their personal information in public forums.

The problems I'm seeing with your definition is that a lot of what you find as un-American behavior is practiced by a majority of Americans now, for reasons other than cultural. Modern stresses and problems have caused this society to be a lot less neighborly, and much more reclusive than it was 30-40 years ago. Is it right, or even desirable? Nope. But to pin that on a racial group smacks of scapegoating, rather than drawing a reasonable conclusion.


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Posted by sl
a resident of Shoreline West
on Feb 10, 2011 at 3:21 pm

The hospital is trying to market itself better in economic down time. Diseases prevental care need to be started right now. The hospital's approach not only help the Chinese, but also stop disease from spreading. Less sick people = healthier community. I think the program should be extended to other people from different region of the world.

Statisticly, Chinese people in Silicon valley have the highest average education level compare to other group of poeple. They don't speak perfect English, but the Chinese people are the significan contirbutors to the high tech industry. They work hard, they pay tax, and most importantly, they don't borther you. I feel safe walking in a Chinese neighborhood at night. Let's respect one another. World peace!


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Posted by Observer
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Feb 10, 2011 at 6:56 pm

AJ

"I don't think Italian immigrants were ever restricted as a race from entering this country (try Googling Chinese Exclusion Act)."

Actually, thousands of Italians were turned away from these shores in the 1920s, and were forced to go to South America.

"I don't think German Americans were ever interred during World War II."

Yes, some Germans were interred during WW2 at a Camp neadr Lompoc, CA now Vandenberg Air Force Base"

"I don't think that any European American scientist was prosecuted for stealing government secrets primarily on the basis of his former nationality, like Wen Ho Lee was."

Yes, the Rosenbergs were tried and executed for handing over nuclear secrets to the Soviets in the 1950s.

Try again.


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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Feb 10, 2011 at 7:48 pm

I disagree with those that seem to think our sameness and assimilation into popular culture is what defines our "Americaness". I would argue this is the trait of more sinister societies, that place value on conformity to an established standard, no matter how immoral or immaterial that standard may be.

Rather, our country's history confirms that the defining trait of America is its tolerance and celebration of our DIFFERENCES.

Sadly, with the polarization of politics, the rise of pundits that focus on the black and white, and not the intricacies of what lies between, and the ease with which we are willing to view differences as barriers, instead of gateways to expanding understanding, America is becoming less American all the time.

Look closely, and the real struggle isn't about who should stay and who should go, but rather who is willing to help to make this a better place for all, and who is interested only in preserving their self interests.


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Posted by Observer
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Feb 10, 2011 at 9:43 pm

"Rather, our country's history confirms that the defining trait of America is its tolerance and celebration of our DIFFERENCES."

Actually, not true. This is what some ultra-lineral revisionist historians would like us to believe, but the proof is just not there. Only since the Civil Rights era could this be considered remotely true. US history for the first nearly 200 years was anything but.

If you disagree, please provide a brief outline.

"Look closely, and the real struggle isn't about who should stay and who should go, but rather who is willing to help to make this a better place for all, and who is interested only in preserving their self interests."

More fuzzy logic. On the basis of this statement, the article and comments above, it would seem then that the Chinese are only interested in preserving their self interests"


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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Feb 10, 2011 at 10:03 pm

"Actually, not true. This is what some ultra-lineral revisionist historians would like us to believe, but the proof is just not there. Only since the Civil Rights era could this be considered remotely true. US history for the first nearly 200 years was anything but.

If you disagree, please provide a brief outline."

---------------

Web Link

You can quibble with specifics and technicalities if you like, but it's clear from the founding of this country, that ALL men are considered to be created equal, and that this idea has been the defining belief that has inspired the greatest achievements in this country's history thus far.




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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Feb 10, 2011 at 10:14 pm

"More fuzzy logic. On the basis of this statement, the article and comments above, it would seem then that the Chinese are only interested in preserving their self interests"

-----------------

Ha! You've missed the exact point I've been making.

Yes, there are Chinese people that are only interested in preserving their self interests....as there are also White, Black, Hispanic, and people's of every imaginable race in this country who are also only interested in preserving their self interests. And THAT is the real problem. By stereotyping and associating selfishness to a particular race, you reveal more about your prejudice, than about the root cause of the problem.

When John F. Kennedy challenged the country to ask not what America could do for them, but what they could do for their country, he wasn't directing that challenge just to the Chinese....its meant for ALL of us.


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Posted by AJ
a resident of Waverly Park
on Feb 10, 2011 at 10:42 pm

Sigh. I suppose I should be honored. I didn't realize that I was a pundit worthy of being fact-checked.

If it will make Observer happier, I will readily concede that I engaged in some gross oversimplification to make my point more succintly.

Yes, Observer is correct to note that Italian immigration was under quota and limited for a time starting in the 1920's. I don't think this is on the same scale as the Chinese Exclusion Act, which essentially barred Chinese immigrants as a class from 1882 to 1943, a period of over sixty years. From Wikipedia: "For all practical purposes, the Exclusion Act, along with the restrictions that followed it, froze the Chinese community in place in 1882, and prevented it from growing AND ASSIMILATING into U.S. society as European immigrant groups did." (emphasis mine)

And yes, both Italians and Germans were interred during World War II. Again, an issue of scale: 11,000 Germans compared to nearly 120,000 Japanese.

The Rosenberg trial is not a terribly convincing counterexample for my statement about Wen Ho Lee. Julius and Ether Rosenberg were both born in the U.S., so I'm not sure how they could have been prosecuted "on the basis of [their] former nationality", as I stated, unless you want to argue that they were really executed for being Jewish. Furthermore, Julius apparently really was a courier and recruiter for the Soviets, whereas all but one of Wen Ho Lee's (relatively minor) counts against him were dropped after they could not be proven. It is a matter of historical interpretation, but it would not be too outrageous to posit that he was a suspect primarily due to his ethnicity, and not due to any substantive evidence.

All this is a distraction from my main point, which is this: if you're going to toot the assimilation horn, it shouldn't be a surprise if it is a hard sell to non-white ethnic groups who don't perceive that they are going to be that welcomed anyway because of the way they look. It sounds to them like too much of a "white privilege" offer: just behave and have values like what we "Real Americans" do, and we'll let you into our assimilation club. And you wonder why we don't jump at the chance?

I indulged this quibbling over historical detail this time because in fairness, I started it. However, I am not a historian and find this sort of intellectual chest-thumping quite tiresome. It is usually not productive and serves only to boost the egos of the persons doing the arguing. So please forgive me if I don't continue to engage in further argumentation.


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Posted by Observer
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Feb 11, 2011 at 7:39 am

Some interesting points from two formidable posters.

Hardin:

You'd make a great liberal judge interpreting what you want to believe the Constitution implies, but only outside of your appeal to historical context with which you initiated this discussion. You can't ignore that the writers of the Constitution believed in only one God, a Christian God, and the supremacy of property rights over human rights in many instances, e.g., slaves were considered property at the time of the constitution.

AJ:

The Rosenbergs were Jewish and persecuted to the degree they were partly because of it according to some.

I don't toot the assimiliationist horn. Nor do I agree with race-baiting to either attack or prove a point or to drum up business for a hospital that is short of revenue after going on a spending spree. If you are white or brown or black and read this article you are left feeling excluded. If anything, I just find the notion and other such things as "multiculturalism" and "diversity" as false and failed notions in American society that do more harm than good as is the case here. In the long run, American culture consumes an immigrants culture and no matter how hard they fight against it (their children will prove it in the long run). In turn those cultures add to the strength of US culture, but still within the confines of the Constitution and a Judeo Christian heritage (and you can't attack on without attacking the other). In short, immigrants must ultimately bend to our dominant culture, made up by valuable contributions of many and ultimately current interpretations of the Constitution. Diversity is an essential ingredient of American culture, not an ingredient that should never be added to the stew. The post-Modernist myth would have us believe that we can all get along protecting our unique ethnic cultures. Unfortunately the nation and the strength of communities suffer because of it. In my mind it's nothing more than self-imposed cultural segregation. That is selfish on both sides. And then try to apply that ideal and argument to African American culture and tell me where you find yourself standing. One could even say that the Chinese or Mexicans immigrants that do not seek to assimilate do not benefit from the spirit of the Constitution. And to say that some Chinese don't interact as much as other cultures based on being non-white is in self-reflexive terms, essentially racist. In short, I think we all need to get along and contribute and shed some of our culture (I am a first-generation American) in return for benefit from the evolved nation we have which is a product of the Constitution in its original form and meaning.


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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Feb 11, 2011 at 8:12 am

"Hardin:

You'd make a great liberal judge interpreting what you want to believe the Constitution implies, but only outside of your appeal to historical context with which you initiated this discussion. You can't ignore that the writers of the Constitution believed in only one God, a Christian God, and the supremacy of property rights over human rights in many instances, e.g., slaves were considered property at the time of the constitution. "

--------------------

Woosh. You still don't get it. You can discuss this in historical context if you like, but it will serve only to confirm that you're lost in book knowledge, and oblivious to the real world.

If only Life fell into 2 categories, Liberal/Conservative, Democrat/Republican, Black/White, American/Un-American, does your line of thought make any sense. Fortunately, most of Life consists of many more layers than that.

Computers work on the basis of "0's" and "1's", humans (and the societies they live in), do not.

And...

Considering all the references to dominant cultures and assimilation, let me get something straight:

In order to be THE true "American", that rugged individualist that is the epitome of self-reliance and cornerstone of liberty,....you have to be "assimilated", Borg-Style into the collective?

/scratching head


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Posted by AJ
a resident of Waverly Park
on Feb 11, 2011 at 11:23 am

Observer:

Thank you for a substantive reply to my post.

I actually agree with you that the current state of "self-imposed cultural segregation", as you put it, is not a good thing. The big question, in my mind, is where do you place the cultural norm that we are all to meet at? Is it automatically, exclusively, in every case without exception the traditional white American norm?

Mind you, I do not advocate altering American norms willy-nilly. I think it would be insanity to suggest, for example, that Mandarin be made a second official language, or that Chinese New Year be a national holiday.

But here we are talking about a hospital that is recognizing that 23% of the surrounding population would be better served (and provide more revenue) with some bilingual doctors and better education about diseases like Hepatitis B. Are we so attached to our white American norms that this kind of change is threatening? Is the cultural norm damaged because they add rice porridge to the menu?

I am curious about your comment that the changes to the hospital leave you feeling excluded. I am trying to come up with an analogy that would leave me feeling that way, and I can't. If the hospital announced that they were opening up a sickle-cell anemia ward, for example, and that it would be likely to increase revenue and allow the hospital to serve a larger community, my first reaction is, "Great! They need it", not, "wow, I am excluded because I am not Afro-American and don't have sickle-cell anemia." So I think I am missing something.


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