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Asian-American Groups Hail Supreme Court's Obamacare Ruling

by Amna Nawaz /

Asian-American groups hailed the Supreme Court's decision today to reject a challenge to President Obama's health care law, ruling to uphold Obamacare for the second time.

Community and health care groups celebrated the ruling as a win for hundreds of thousands of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders who were given access to health coverage because of the Affordable Care Act.

"Today's Supreme Court decision reaffirms the validity of the ACA," said Stewart Kwoh, President and Executive Director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice-LA, in a statement. "Now all efforts must be made to ensure that those remaining uninsured individuals have access to affordable, quality health coverage, whether through Medicaid, the Marketplaces, or further health care reform efforts."

The Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF) had previously filed an amicus brief in the case. The group's brief detailed the lingering health disparities facing Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders, arguing that these communities, "disproportionately lacked resources to access affordable health care and thus were less likely to be insured than non-Hispanic white Americans...As many as 65.7 percent of Chinese Americans living in the western United States were uninsured before the implementation of the Affordable Care Act."

Individual groups within the AAPI label, it argued, suffered disproportionately high uninsured rates, like 26 percent of Tongans, 24 percent of Marshallese, 23 percent of Pakistanis, and 21 percent of Cambodians.