Hospitals Promote Preventive Care for Immigrant Patients
Some hospitals have created education programs that focus on the challenges minority and immigrant populations face in navigating the U.S. health system, the Washington Post reports.
The Post profiled the Holy Cross Hospital Ethnic Health Promotion Program, which uses community leaders -- including foreign-trained physicians who cannot practice medicine in the U.S. -- and "laymen to teach prevention in the immigrants' languages and in the context of their various cultures."
The goal of the program is to reduce "costly emergency room admissions," according to the Post. Each culture has a different way of interacting with health providers, and the "concept of going to a doctor for checkups is novel to many minorities and immigrants," the Post reports.
Many immigrants delay seeking care for conditions that would have been treatable through office visits, and sometimes patients are unaware that their condition is treatable because it would not have been in their home country, according to internist Elise Riley, director of the Holy Cross Hospital Health Center at Montgomery College in Maryland (Satyanarayana, Washington Post, 2/5).