IHA responds to Syrians’ health

By on July 21, 2016
(Herald file photo).

Over 100 Syrian refugees have moved into the B.C. Interior, as part of a massive resettlement effort across Canada, and the Interior Health Authority is working to ensure they receive top quality health care upon their arrival.

As many of the families resettled in Canada, Interior Health representatives ran into a number of challenges related to delivering health care services — language barriers chief among those challenges.

Between January and April 2016, primary care centres in Kelowna, Kamloops and Vernon saw 91 Syrian refugees — all of whom required an interpreter.

Since then, Arabic signage has been added to health care facilities, and Interior Health recruited a range of health-care providers who were willing to deliver care to refugees through the Interim Federal Health program.

Nurse practitioners were also essential in providing primary care for the refugees, the release stated.

Since November 2015, 135 refugees have been settled in the B.C. Interior, with more coming.

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