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Community Health Navigator Program to Fill Gaps in Care for Houston's Burmese Refugees
Date:2/6/2010

Physician Assistant Foundation, Baylor College of Medicine partner to create model for refugee health care

HOUSTON, Feb. 6 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Physician Assistant Foundation (PAF), Baylor College of Medicine and other local partners today unveiled their unique approach to providing health care and social services to Burmese refugees in Houston, with hopes the program could become a model for meeting similar needs of refugees across the country.

Facilitated by Epiphany Community Health Outreach Services (ECHOS), a Houston-based organization that specializes in connecting underserved communities with resources and services essential to their well-being, the Community Health Navigator Program is a pilot program intended to increase access to quality, affordable health and social services for Houston's Burmese refugees in ways that are culturally sensitive and linguistically appropriate, while also addressing other social challenges they may be facing, such as transportation and employment.

The Community Health Navigator Program engages physician assistants (PAs) — health professionals trained in the medical model — and Health Navigators — English-speaking individuals from within the refugee community trained to act as health educators as well as translators and cultural interpreters — to work with Burmese refugees, assessing their individual needs and identifying culturally appropriate solutions.

"With their extensive reach in the community, ECHOS knows first-hand the health problems facing the Burmese in Houston and the potential magnitude of these problems if left unattended," said Carl Fasser, PA, '/>"/>

SOURCE Physician Assistant Foundation
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