Master's Culminating Experience
Introduction: This study aimed to understand the chronic disease burden of anemia, cancer, diabetes mellitus, hypertension, overweight/obesity, stroke, and tobacco use in the domestic as well as a refugee population. It also aimed to examine the current literature on appropriate screening for those conditions.
Methods: 348 refugee screening intake exams from Public Health - Dayton & Montgomery County were analyzed for presence of the conditions stated. Screening intake recommendations from the CDC, the Minnesota Public Health Department, the Canadian Collaboration for Immigrant and Refugee Health, and the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services were examined and compared in order to glean best practices and recommendations.
Results: Overall, this refugee population showed varying deviations from domestic figures in regards to chronic disease prevalence. When examined en bloc, this group had higher prevalence of anemia in men and women, cancer in women, diabetes in men and women, and tobacco use in men when comparing the refugee group to the domestic group. Screening intake recommendations offered similar recommendations on things like routine history and physical including vital signs and screening for past medical history. There was less uniformity on things like cancer screening and mental health interventions.
Conclusions: Chronic disease screening and prevention is an extremely important factor in promoting health amongst all people. Routinely examining and readdressing guidelines while continuing to improve accurate epidemiologic data is of utmost importance in ushering in a new phase of wellness. Different populations face different challenges, and by further understanding this group of refugees, we can begin to help achieve better care for them.
Palakodeti, S. (2012). Chronic Disease Prevalence of a Refugee Population in Dayton, OH. Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio.