Factors Associated with Refugee Acute Healthcare Utilization in Southern Connecticut

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Our objective was to examine refugees' acute care use early in resettlement. We conducted a retrospective cohort study of acute care use, emergency room and hospital visits, by adult refugees arriving in Southern Connecticut between 2/1/2013 and 2/1/2015. We examined associations between any acute care use and collected demographic as well as health characteristics. Of the 248 refugees in our sample, 57% had a medical evaluation within 30 days of arrival. 102 (41%) had at least one acute care visit within 8 months of arrival. Male sex (OR 1.90, 95% CI 1.09-3.30) and prior history of hypertension (OR 2.87, 95% CI 1.06-7.33) were associated with greater likelihood of an acute care visit within 8 months of arrival, while having a medical evaluation within 30 days of arrival was associated with lower likelihood (OR 0.56, 95% CI 0.32-0.98). Designing systems to ensure timely evaluations of newly arrived refugees may reduce frequent acute care utilization.

Authors:

Semere W, Agrawal P, Yun K, Di Bartolo I, Annamalai A, Ross JS