A Health Assessment of Refugee Children From Former Yugoslavia in Tarrant County

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Abstract of Journal Article -- June 2003  

B y John K. Podgore, DO, MPH; Antonio René, MPH, PhD; Raghbir Sandhu, MD, DrPH; and Muriel Marshall, DO, DrPH  

This study was conducted to provide an assessment of the health status and health care utilization of children from former Yugoslavia living in Tarrant County. In addition, an assessment of barriers and problems encountered by these families in obtaining health care for their children was presented. One hundred thirteen households of refugee families arriving in Tarrant County from 1998 through 2000 participated by answering a 79-item health information questionnaire. The results revealed that most of the refugee families had no regular health care provider to assure continuity of medical care. Lack of access to dental care and inappropriate utilization of hospital emergency facilities were also identified as problems. Insufficient understanding of health insurance issues and inability to access health information were additional problems. Local and state health care agencies may help to improve health care delivery for these and future refugee children by addressing these problem areas.

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