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Health Equity ; 5(1): 169-180, 2021.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33937602


Purpose: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic presents health care challenges to asylum seekers living in congregate encampments, including those along the U.S.-Mexico border. It is necessary to understand the impact of the pandemic among this population to address health care needs, reduce transmission, and diminish COVID-19-related morbidity. Methods: Thirty interviews were conducted with asylum seekers and health care professionals in a temporary camp in Matamoros, Mexico to determine challenges, perceptions, and effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Interviews were coded in NVivo12 by using a team-based approach. Results: The pandemic caused significant mental health burdens but no perceived adverse physical effects, with the U.S. border closure and health care access barriers as more pressing concerns. Participants reported access to information about COVID-19 but had varied levels of knowledge and adherence to disease reduction strategies due to camp conditions. Most participants believed that they had special protection from COVID-19, including strong immune systems or from God. The nongovernmental organizations providing health care and sanitation faced multiple challenges to implement new policies to manage COVID-19. The institution of required temperature checks and quarantine of COVID-19 positive patients led to distrust, decreased seeking of health care services among asylum seekers, and possible underreporting of COVID-19 cases. Conclusion: Our findings among asylum seekers in a Matamoros camp highlight the challenges to implementing disease reduction policies in low-resource congregate camps. Policies to address disease outbreaks focusing on the social determinants of health, health care access barriers, and community engagement may be more acceptable to asylum seekers, suggesting the need for effective strategies to provide prevention information that complements such measures.

BMC Public Health ; 21(1): 102, 2021 01 08.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33419406


BACKGROUND: Following the 2016 Peace Agreement with the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC), Colombia promised to reincorporate more than 13,000 guerrilla fighters into its healthcare system. Despite a subsidized healthcare insurance program and the establishment of 24 Espacios Territoriales de Capacitación y Reincorporación (ETCRs-Territorial Spaces for Training and Reintegration) to facilitate this transition, data has shown that FARC ex-combatants access care at disproportionately lower rates, and face barriers to healthcare services. METHODS: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with FARC health promoters and healthcare providers working in ETCRs to determine healthcare access barriers for FARC ex-combatants. Analysis was completed with a qualitative team-based coding method and barriers were categorized according to Julio Frenk's Domains of Healthcare Access framework. RESULTS: Among 32 participants, 25 were healthcare providers and 7 self-identified as FARC health promoters. The sample was majority female (71.9%) and worked with the FARC for an average of 12 months in hospital, health center, medical brigade, and ETCR settings. Our sample had experiences with FARC across 16 ETCRs in 13 Departments of Colombia. Participants identified a total of 141 healthcare access barriers affecting FARC ex-combatants, which affected healthcare needs, desires, seeking, initiation and continuation. Significant barriers were related to a lack of resources in rural areas, limited knowledge of the Colombian health system, the health insurance program, perceived stigma, and transition process from the FARC health system. CONCLUSIONS: FARC ex-combatants face significant healthcare access barriers, some of which are unique from other low-resource populations in Colombia. Potential solutions to these barriers included health insurance provider partnerships with health centers close to ETCRs, and training and contracting FARC health promoters to be primary healthcare providers in ETCRs. Future studies are needed to quantify the healthcare barriers affecting FARC ex-combatants, in order to implement targeted interventions to improve healthcare access.

Pessoal de Saúde , Acesso aos Serviços de Saúde , Cognição , Colômbia , Feminino , Humanos , Seguro Saúde , Pesquisa Qualitativa
J Am Coll Emerg Physicians Open ; 1(5): 757-765, 2020 Oct.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33145516


Objectives: In the 2016 Peace Accord with the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC), Colombia promised to reincorporate 14,000 ex-combatants into the healthcare system. However, FARC ex-combatants have faced significant challenges in receiving healthcare, and little is known about physicians' abilities to address this population's healthcare needs. Methods: An electronic questionnaire sent to the Colombian Emergency Medicine professional society and teaching hospitals assessed physicians' knowledge, attitudes, and experiences with the FARC ex-combatant reincorporation process. Results: Among 53 participants, most were male (60.4%), and ∼25% were affected by the FARC conflict (22.6%). Overall knowledge of FARC reincorporation was low, with nearly two-thirds of participants (61.6%) scoring in the lowest category. Attitudes around ex-combatants showed low bias. Few physicians received training about reincorporation (7.5%), but 83% indicated they would like such training. Twenty-two participants (41.5%) had identified a patient as an ex-combatant in the healthcare setting. Higher knowledge scores were significantly correlated with training about reincorporation (r = 0.354, n = 53, P = 0.015), and experience identifying patients as ex-combatants (r = 0.356, n = 47, P = 0.014). Conclusion: Findings suggested high interest in training and low knowledge of the reincorporation process. Most physicians had low bias, frequent experiences with ex-combatants, and cared for these patients when they self-identify. The emergency department (ED) serves as an entrance into healthcare for this population and a potential setting for interventions to improve care delivery, especially those related to mental healthcare. Future studies could evaluate effects of care delivery following training on ex-combatant healthcare reintegration.

J Low Genit Tract Dis ; 22(4): 326-332, 2018 Oct.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30256337


OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to assess human papillomavirus (HPV) prevalence, knowledge, attitudes, and practices, among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Monrovia, Liberia. MATERIALS AND METHOD: This cross-sectional study was conducted with 107 MSM, aged 18 to 58 years, completing questionnaires and anal HPV screenings. Using peer-educators and direct community involvement, demographics, risk factors, and HPV knowledge data were collected. RESULTS: Forty-eight participants (45%) were HPV positive and 21 participants (19.6%) self-identified as HIV positive. When examining HPV risk factors, 22 participants reported first sexual experience before the age of 15 years. Approximately half of participants (n = 58, 54.2%) have receptive anal sex and 40 (37.4%) reported more than 20 lifetime sexual partners. Eight participants (7.5%) had no formal education and 80 (74.8%) were not formally employed. Two-thirds of participants (64%) had never heard of HPV. Education was not significantly correlated with HPV knowledge. χ tests of independence were performed, and the relation between oral and anal sex and HPV knowledge was significant (χ (1) = 5.08, p < .05; χ (1) = 4.18, p < .05), respectively, such that those who engaged in oral and anal sex had lower levels of HPV knowledge. CONCLUSIONS: Among the MSM population, HPV prevalence is high, as are high-risk practices. Participants lack HPV knowledge, independent of educational achievement, and are eager to receive educational information. Future studies should focus on identifying additional risk factors and implementing public health educational interventions.

Transmissão de Doença Infecciosa/prevenção & controle , Conhecimentos, Atitudes e Prática em Saúde , Homossexualidade Masculina , Infecções por Papillomavirus/epidemiologia , Infecções por Papillomavirus/psicologia , Adolescente , Adulto , Estudos Transversais , Humanos , Libéria/epidemiologia , Masculino , Pessoa de Meia-Idade , Infecções por Papillomavirus/transmissão , Prevalência , Assunção de Riscos , Adulto Jovem