PURPOSE AND OBJECTIVES OF COMMUNITY HEALTH
Minnesota is one of the healthiest states in the country, however large health disparities exist within the immigrant and refugee communities. In fact, immigrants to Minnesota are among the least served by our state's excellent health system because many are alienated by its complexity. Their legal status, lack of insurance, and crippling payment systems discourage many from seeking needed care.
When language and cultural differences make it difficult to be understood, many may feel their concerns are minimized. Many health care providers do not understand their immigrant/refugee patients may have different beliefs and expectations about health care. Still others are not aware of the significant communication barriers with their immigrant/refugee patients.
These barriers in access and quality of health care result in:
- Poorer overall health for immigrants/refugees
- Higher rates of infectious diseases, chronic conditions, and mental health problems
- Many only seek care in emergency situations
- Low rates of comprehension and adherence to doctors' orders
- Increased expenses to our health care system
- Lower productivity in industries that employ immigrants/refugees
- Poor housing and economic opportunities
In order to improve the quality of care and ability of immigrants/refugees to access care, New Americans Community Services is implementing the following programs:
New Americans Community Health Clinic
African Community Health Information, Education & Valued Engagement
African Immigrants Patient Safety Issues
Navigating the health care system for African Immigrants