Addressing Global Health Needs among Refugee Children and Families in Durham County


This Bass Connections project serves as the pilot for an ambitious multidisciplinary effort to develop a culturally appropriate, robust healthcare model that can help reduce health disparities among some of Durham’s newest, most vulnerable community members. In 2017-2018, this project team will study three central questions:

  1. What are the most significant health needs of Durham’s refugee children, as perceived by their families and themselves, as well as by the medical community?
  2. What barriers to accessing care currently perpetuate these health disparities?
  3. How can these barriers be overcome?

The team will be engaged in these six activities:

  1. Conduct an appraisal of existing models of refugee healthcare elsewhere in the U.S., in order to learn from the particular strengths and weaknesses of concurrent efforts.
  2. Investigate current health systems available to refugee families in Durham, scouting the various pathways to care as well as common pitfalls.
  3. Create a research design for a comprehensive needs assessment of physical and mental health needs among refugee children and their caregivers in Durham.
  4. Collect quantitative and qualitative data for needs assessment.
  5. Design and plan a culturally appropriate intervention based on results from prior activities as well as reactions from a meeting with key stakeholders.
  6. Disseminate research deliverables to local refugee care providers and potential funders.

Ultimately, this pilot aims to lay the foundation for a model of healthcare delivery that will meet the multidimensional needs of refugee children the local community.