REACT is a student-led venture which strives to address the healthcare disparities from geographic, linguistic and cultural isolation of the refugee community in Arizona/Phoenix. We will achieve this by Understanding the needs of the community, Engaging the community directly, Educating through the use of culturally appropriate materials, and providing access to supplemental Patient Care.
This venture is unique in that it is an interdisciplinary fusion between students, health professionals, and non-profit organizations empowering underserved refugees. A refugee is an individual forced to leave their country because of persecution, war, or violence. Once they arrive in the United States, they are forced to restart their lives, often with little to no financial assets, minimal English literacy, and a lack of transferable skills from their previous occupations in their home countries. In addition to these socioeconomic disparities, it is common for refugees to face health disparities. Consequently, refugees are one of the most vulnerable populations in our society.
Our organization provides value to the refugee community through our three key services. These are made up of supplemental resources, educational workshops, and clinical services. Our supplemental materials include resources that our clients will use after they have left our care to further improve their health and quality of life. These items include personal hygiene kits, informational pamphlets, and nutritional foods.
The educational workshops we provide specifically address identified knowledge gaps that impede the autonomy of our clients’ health and wellbeing. Several of the topics that we cover (but are not limited to) are diabetes, postpartum depression, nutrition, dental hygiene, AHCCCS, and nutrition. The clinical services that the clinic will provide will be supplementary primary care services that will encompass basic physical exams, A1C blood pressure checks, and vaccinations. These services all are aimed at alleviating the barriers to health that refugees face and ultimately improve their quality of life.
Our venture seeks to maintain positive and sustained relationships with our client segments through continuous community engagement. In conjunction with providing educational workshops and clinical care in the future, REACT continually engages the community by planning formal and informal programming with the refugees based on the needs and wishes of individual communities.
REACT generates these services through the work of medical students from Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine and undergraduates from Arizona State University. Our team brings together the experience from hundreds of hours of work in the community, collaborations with refugee community leaders, and the insight of professionals in the healthcare/social-work industry.
Further, our members have had extensive experience working with refugees, training in culturally sensitive practices, and delivering care to those that need it most. With the cost of healthcare exponentially rising, there is little hope for refugees to find adequate culturally competent healthcare. This leads to an increase in chronic diseases, preventable health issues, and increased hospitalization costs. Supporting REACT is not only an investment in the health of the refugees but the health of our entire healthcare system.