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Aust N Z J Public Health. 2007 Aug;31(4):333-5.

Health services utilisation and barriers for settlers from the Horn of Africa.

Author information

1
Department of Medicine (RMH/WH), University of Melbourne, Royal Melbourne Hospital, Victoria.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To examine health services use and barriers for recently arrived immigrants from the Horn of Africa.

METHOD:

A cross-sectional study conducted in Melbourne, Australia, with a convenience sample of newly arrived immigrants (n=126) from Somalia (n=67), Ethiopia (n=24), Eritrea (n=26) and Sudan (n=6).

RESULTS:

GPs were the major health providers for participants, yet 22 (17%) respondents had not yet accessed health services in Australia. Thirty-three (26%) participants reported having had an unmet health concern for which they would have liked to seek advice. The most commonly identified barriers to health care and recommendations for improving services were associated with communication.

CONCLUSIONS:

This study illustrates unmet health needs among new arrivals and a need for linguistically appropriate information about the use of Australia's health system.

IMPLICATIONS:

The findings support increased use of professional interpreting services and support for new arrivals in making initial contact with the health system.

PMID:
17725011
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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