Refugee Health Program
Purpose of Program
The purpose of the Georgia Department of Public Health Refugee Health Program is to promote the physical, mental, and social well-being of all newly arriving refugees in the state of Georgia.
The program ensures that refugees receive adequate healthcare, which is not provided in their native country. The refugee health screening (also referred to as the domestic health assessment) has four central purposes: (1) to reduce and recognize health-related barriers to successful resettlement, (2) to protect the health of local, state, and national populations, (3) identify health issues that may need continued care over and beyond public health’s capacity, and (4) ensure that the client has full use of Medicaid during their eight month eligibility as mandated by the Federal Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR). In correlation, outreach services provide health education to the refugee community, further ensuring prevention of infirmity.
Functions of the Program
Domestic Health Assessment and Immunization
- Collaborates with county health departments to screen all newly arriving refugees in Georgia for communicable and chronic diseases and to administer immunizations. This appointment should be initiated within 30 days of the client’s arrival so that full use of Medicaid during the eight month eligibility period is taken advantage of.
- Provides interpretation and translation services. Medical Interpretation during the initial health screening and follow-up
- Available languages for Interpretation: Somali and Arabic
- Pre-screening health orientation and education
- Refugee health case management for complex medical issues
- Home visits to ensure compliance with medical treatment plans
- Assist refugees during visits to the doctor, hospital, dentist, etc.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who is a Refugee?
A refugee, as defined by the Refugee Act of 1980, is a person who is outside of and unable or unwilling to avail himself/herself of the protection of the home country because of persecution or fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.
Who is Eligible?
Refugees, Asylees, Cuban/Haitian Entrants, Special Immigrant Visa Iraqis, and Victims of Human Trafficking is eligible for the program.
Where are services located?
Statewide – local county health departments provide the refugee domestic health screening.