PURPOSE of our Tucson Refugee Health Information Wiki

Most refugees resettled to the United States speak little English, or no English at all, and many are unfamiliar with our health care system, and how to navigate it. When accessing health care and health information, this can be a serious challenge for them and for their health care providers. The //**Refugee Primary Care Work Group**// hopes that many of the questions and concerns that health care professionals encounter when serving their refugee clients may be addressed on this collaborative site.

The Tucson Refugee Health Information wiki is a living document intended to give providers in Tucson, Arizona, access to resources about health issues in the languages of their diverse patients, and basics about interpreting services, transportation, health insurance and cultural resources. These links can assist health care providers during their patient consultations. The principal goal of this site is to offer Tucson, Arizona-based health care providers a space where information can be easily shared and accessed.
  • The site can be of assistance to health care providers serving refugees resettled to Tucson, with printable health information for refugees in their own languages.
  • This is a site that not only shares information about refugee health issues, but also allows health care providers in the Tucson area to share emerging issues, and access timely health information to share with patients.

This wiki also provides federal and state refugee health contact information and government links to help answer broader or more specific concerns of providers regarding the refugee experience, definitions, and other information resources for serving their refugee patients and communities.

If you are a health care provider working with refugee communities in Tucson, please feel free to suggest additional information or submit a request to be a member of this Wiki in order to share information pertaining to refugee health.
For more history about the project, CLICK HERE

The Tucson Refugee Health Information wiki page began through the collaborative efforts of the Refugee Primary Care Work Group in Pima County, Arizona. The Work Group was formed in 2009 by the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, Health Promotion Sciences Division at the University of Arizona, on behalf of the Pima County Community Health Task Force, through funding for a primary care needs assessment from St. Luke's Health Initiatives and the Arizona Health Facilities Authority. The project was led by Jean McClelland as principal investigator, and a report was submitted in May 2010, Refugee Primary Care Access and Delivery Needs in Pima County. To read the report, CLICK HERE -->
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A series of recommendations were developed by the Refugee Primary Care Work Group through this project. and one central recommendation was to make appropriate health information materials available to health care providers to use in patient education for their refugee patients.

The principal recommendations addressed by this site are as follows:
  • Improve and increase language support services through: ... increasing availability of written materials and other language resources reflecting the literacy levels of clients.
  • Creation and regular updating of web-based health education materials in multiple languages for health provider use and dissemination, as well as web-based orientation materials for providers regarding refugee populations (culture, language, etc.) in Tucson.
  • Creation of health system orientation curricula and training for all newly arriving refugees and include, where possible, opportunities for information update (“booster”) sessions for refugees who have been in Tucson for any length of time to include: RMAP/AHCCCS coverage including EPSDT; making appointments; referral and prior authorization process; right to and process for requesting interpreters and appropriate language services; right to receive medically necessary care; refilling medications and pharmacy resources; roles of primary care, medical specialists, urgent care and ER; and the importance of preventative medicine. This training should involve and be available to providers and volunteers serving refugees.

To see all of the recommendations developed by the Refugee Primary Care Work Group, CLICK HERE.

For any suggestions, questions, or comments about this site, please contact any one of the following people:

Sara Tankersley (Health Information Resources and Overall Website Structure)
Wiki Coordinator
School of Information Resources and Library Sciences, Masters Candidate
University of Arizona, Arizona Health Sciences Library

Yamila El-Khayat (Health Information Resources)
Outreach Services Librarian
Arizona Health Sciences Library, University of Arizona
520 626 6770

Jean McClelland (Overall Website Content and Structure)
Program Director of Community-Based Health Information Resources
Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health
The University of Arizona
520 626 8228