With more people arriving in the St. Louis area from other countries likely this year, refugee and immigrant advocates say it’s important to ensure health care providers can communicate with new arrivals. .
The St. Louis International Institute expects arrivals from Afghanistan, Ukraine, Haiti, Nicaragua, Cuba and Venezuela.
Language barriers and unfamiliarity with the country’s healthcare system can make it difficult for some people trying to settle in to understand the ins and outs of the U.S. healthcare system, said senior vice talent development and healthcare. President Blake Hamilton said. Advocacy for international laboratories.
“It’s about understanding what benefits you have, what your copays are, and what your doctor’s visits will cost,” says Hamilton. “But it’s also about understanding your provider.”
Refugees receive initial medical examinations and health care during their first eight months in the United States, after which they must purchase insurance, obtain it through their employer, or apply for public benefits.
Last week, Affinia Healthcare received a $63,000 grant from the St. Louis Lutheran Foundation to help immigrants and refugees access medical services. Affinia also provides community health workers to help refugees and migrants access health care and apply for Medicaid.
said Dr. Kendra Holmes, President and CEO of Affinia Healthcare. “So imagine the challenge if you don’t speak the language and don’t understand the healthcare system.”
Holmes said prenatal care, screening, immunizations and mental health services were some of the most needed services for refugees and migrants.
Affinia and BJC Healthcare are prioritizing programs that provide immigration assistance in their native language, Hamilton said. A focus on such services would improve the health of migrants and refugees, he said.
Mr Hamilton said: A translation service that helps make that happen. “