Community members Marcus Tanimoto, Allen Goya, and Sheldon Kawahara work on a computer-simulated Medicare plan during a MedCHAT study at Keiro Senior HealthCare. (Photo courtesy of Keiro Senior HealthCare)

In its over 50-year history, Keiro Senior HealthCare has supported close to 50 different research projects, contributing to the knowledge base nationally and internationally about the aging process, public policy, and health care delivery.

Study topics have ranged from anxiety in Japanese American older adults to aging among Japanese immigrants to cultural influences on Japanese Americans’ conceptualization of Alzheimer’s disease and their decision to seek help.
Study partners have included UCLA; USC; University of Oregon; University of Colorado-Colorado Springs; RAND Corporation; Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology; Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare; and many others.

Study to Redesign Medicare

Recently, Keiro was appointed to the California MedCHAT Collaborative, which brings together 20 senior service organizations throughout the state to provide input into the creation of a sustainable Medicare program for the future.

Through this collaborative, Keiro is partnering with the Center for Healthcare Decisions, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that brings health policy issues to the public at large, and LeadingAge California, a state association serving non-profit aging and long-term care communities, to convene small discussion groups to inform state and national policy leaders on the perspective of Californians on Medicare benefit design.

Keiro has conducted four small discussion groups and is collaborating with the following community partners to organize additional groups: East San Gabriel Valley Japanese Community Center, Faith United Methodist Church, Gardena Buddhist Church, Gardena Valley Baptist Church, Gardena Valley Japanese Cultural Institute, Japanese Institute of Sawtelle, Los Angeles Hompa Hongwanji Buddhist Temple, Orange Coast Free Methodist Church, Orange County Buddhist Church, San Fernando Valley Japanese Community Center, Venice Hongwanji Buddhist Temple, Venice Japanese Community Center, Venice Pioneer Project, Venice Santa Monica Free Methodist Church, Westlight Community Church, West Los Angeles United Methodist Church, West Los Angeles Holiness Church, and Wintersburg Presbyterian Church.

Breast Cancer Study

Keiro is also partnering with two major universities to recruit participants for two important studies. The first study is being conducted at UCLA and is called “Culture, Social Support and Quality of Life: Asian American Breast Cancer Survivors.” This study is being conducted in partnership with Dr. Marjorie Kagawa-Singer of UCLA, Dr. Qian Lu of the University of Houston, and the San Francisco Chinatown Public Health Center.

The purpose of the study is to understand how Asian American cancer support services have assisted Asian American women with breast cancer and their families in overcoming many of the challenges encountered through the cancer experience. The primary component of this study involves individual interviews and focus group discussions with Japanese breast cancer patients and survivors in the Los Angeles County area. Participants will receive a token of appreciation worth $90.

Study eligibility criteria include:
• Between the ages of 35-70
• Within one to five years of diagnosis
• Self-identify as a Japanese woman with breast cancer
• May be interviewed in English
• Willing to identify a family member or close friend to be interviewed as part of this study

If you are interested in participating in this study, see the study flyer at

Active Living with Chronic Conditions

Keiro is also partnering with Stanford University to recruit people to test the effectiveness of the Active Living with Chronic Conditions Tool Kit, a mailed version of the successful Stanford Chronic Disease Self-Management Program, which was developed by the Stanford Patient Education Research Center (part of the Department of Medicine at the Stanford School of Medicine).

In this study, participants will receive a book called “Living a Healthy Life with Chronic Conditions,” an exercise CD and accompanying booklet, a relaxation CD, tip sheets, and a self-test that will help participants decide how to use the materials. All participants with diabetes will also receive home A1C blood test kits and be sent the results.

Study eligibility criteria include:

• Must not have taken any previous Stanford (or Keiro) self-management program
• May not have received treatment for cancer in the past year
• Must not be pregnant
• Must be able to read at a 7th-grade level
• Reside in the U.S.

If you are interested in participating in this study, see the study flyer at

For more information, call (323) 980-7555 or visit


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