Online Program

Nutritional Assessment and Health Status of Refugee Children Arriving to Cleveland

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Drisana Henry, B.A., School of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, OH
Mendel E. Singer, PhD, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH
Margaret Larkins-Pettigrew, MD, MPPM, M.Ed, Department of OB/GYN, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, University Hospitals, MacDonald Women's Hospital, Cleveland, OH
Ellen Rome, MD, MPH, Adolescent Medicine, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH
Kate Conway, MD, MPH, Neighborhood Family Practice, Cleveland, OH
Background: Ohio is a destination for an increasing number of refugees seeking resettlement including those of Iraqi, Nepali and Burmese descent. Common nutrition-related problems observed in refugee children include anemia, malnutrition and low body weight. Objectives of this study are to examine ethnic differences in the nutritional status of refugee children arriving to Cuyahoga County and to gain a better understanding of the refugee family's approach to nutrition and food access experience while awaiting final resettlement.

Methods: This study was performed at a Federally Qualified Health Community Center (FQHC) where refugees arriving to Cuyahoga County receive their first US health screening. Part one of this study was a retrospective chart review examining the health status of newly-arrived refugee children ages 0-16 years from 2010-present. Part two of this study was a qualitative survey interview performed with newly-arrived adult refugees during their initial health screening appointment, which took place March - May 2013.

Results: Research is currently in progress and will be completed by June 2013. Biometric parameters will be compared between different ethnic groups such as weight for height, head circumference, medical diagnoses, medications and lab results. Results will also describe adult refugees' beliefs, practices and challenges related to the nutritional support of their families while living as a refugee.

Conclusions: This study has many public health implications on a local, national and international level. Data obtained from this study will provide healthcare practitioners, public health officials and governmental agencies with useful nutritional and dietary information on refugee children.

Learning Areas:

Clinical medicine applied in public health
Diversity and culture
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the nutritional and health status of refugee children arriving to the United States Describe differences in dietary patterns between ethnic groups Compare differences in the nutritional and health status of refugee children between ethnic groups

Keyword(s): Child Health, Refugees

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have studied the topic extensively as part of my academic coursework and research for my Master of Public Health degree.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.