Providing Tools for Clinicians to Better Support Immigrant Health

Statement of Problem

More than 1 million immigrants arrive in the U.S. each year. These newcomers are dispersed all across the country and are often sent to primary care providers and public health clinics that do not have expertise in newcomer health. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) created guidance for providers that includes recommended screenings based on the age, sex, and country of origin of newcomers, but this guidance can be challenging for providers to enact in their clinical practice due to time constraints and limitations of electronic health records (EHR). This often means that newcomers are not receiving the evidence-based care they need in order to lead a healthy life. We know that when caregivers receive support to meet their needs, it positively impacts their child’s well-being. Therefore, it’s essential that we take the necessary steps to improve the health of newcomer caregivers and their children.

Description

With input from other newcomer health providers through the Minnesota Center of Excellence in Newcomer Health, our team created a set of tools to help clinicians make evidence-based, guidance-directed standardized care decisions when treating newcomer patients that also provides flexibility for local workflows.

This suite of clinical decision support tools is designed to embed in EHR systems and provide clinicians with up-to-date CDC guidance and CareRef recommendations, using order sets and associated documentation templates. This intervention has been in production at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia since 2017 and other institutions since 2019.

We revised this tool in 2020 to align with updated CDC guidance and decrease installation time to meet the resource requirements of other health care systems. Based on recent feedback from clinical and informatics teams, installation is estimated to require 10 hours of analyst time.

Next Steps

Our team will continue to update and revise these tools to ensure alignment with changes to CDC guidance. We are also providing guidance and support to clinicians who would like this tool installed into their health care system’s EHR.

We hope that these tools will help clinicians caring for newcomers to more easily implement CDC guidance and other best practices in their daily work to provide newcomers with the opportunity to live a healthy life not only for themselves, but also for their children.

If you would like to review the build instructions for this tool or see a demonstration video, please reach out to refugee.cds@email.chop.edu.

This project page was last updated in December 2020. 

Suggested Citation

Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, PolicyLab. Providing Tools for Clinicians to Better Support Immigrant Health [Online]. Available at: http://www.policylab.chop.edu [Accessed: plug in date accessed here]. 

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