Health Disparities Faced by Refugees

The SHREC project is designed to assess the health disparities faced by refugees arriving in the Denver area with the long-term goal of designing an elective to be integrated into the CU Health Sciences curriculum that will help overcome those disparities while giving students invaluable experience working with minority cultures in a local environment.  We are currently in our data gathering stage of the needs assessment, and are working towards disseminating and collecting surveys and interviews from the various groups within the study.  We hope to collect a total of 400 responses from refugees; this is roughly 1.2% of the refugee population in the Denver area.   45 of those responses will be in the form of one-on-one interviews, 60 in the form of focus groups, and 295 in the form of self-administered questionnaires.  We also hope to interview 30 healthcare providers who see refugees on a regular basis in their practice, and 20 refugee community leaders (“key informants”) who might have insight into the problem.  We will stratify the refugees into groups: those that have been in Denver less than 8 months, those that have been here between 8 months and 5 years, and those who have been here more than five years.  Each group has different abilities and programs available to them, and so the obstacles to healthcare will be different between groups.  We hope to be able to use this data to design a sustainable elective for students to enroll in that will address the issues that come up in a way that gives them worthwhile experience while also helping the refugees gain greater self-sufficiency and quality of life.

Contact information:

Advisor         Eva Aagaard     (303)315.2184
Lowry Clinic    Sue Franta      (720)956.2234
Mercy Housing   Sheryl Johnson  (303)320.7763