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Open AccessCommunication

Health and Healthcare Utilization among Asylum-Seekers from Berlin’s LGBTIQ Shelter: Preliminary Results of a Survey

1
Department of Health Care Management, Technical University Berlin, 10623 Berlin, Germany
2
Berlin School of Public Health, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, 10117 Berlin, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(12), 4514; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17124514
Received: 9 June 2020 / Revised: 18 June 2020 / Accepted: 19 June 2020 / Published: 23 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Migrant Health Burden: Emerging Challenges and Future Solutions)
Background: LGBTIQ asylum-seekers face multiple health risks. Yet, little is known about their healthcare needs. In 2016, Berlin opened the only major shelter for LGBTIQ asylum-seekers in Germany. This preliminary study describes health and healthcare utilization by asylum-seekers living in Berlin’s LGBTIQ shelter. To identify particular healthcare needs, we compared our results to asylum-seekers from other shelters. Methods: We surveyed residents of the LGBTIQ shelter and 21 randomly selected shelters in Berlin, using a validated questionnaire in nine languages (n = 309 respondents, including 32 respondents from the LGBTIQ shelter). Bivariate tests and generalized linear mixed models were applied to examine differences in health and healthcare utilization between the two groups. Results: Residents of the LGBTIQ shelter show high rates of chronic and mental illness. They use ambulatory and mental health services more frequently than asylum-seekers from other shelters, including a significantly higher chance of obtaining psychotherapy/psychiatric care in case of need. Emergency room utilization is also higher in the LGBTIQ group. Conclusions: Asylum-seekers from the LGBTIQ shelter face high chronic and mental health burdens. Tailored services in the LGBTIQ shelter help obtain adequate healthcare; they should be scaled up to maximize their potential. Yet, unmet needs remain and warrant further research. View Full-Text
Keywords: asylum-seekers; refugees; LGBTIQ; healthcare utilization; Germany; mental health; chronic illness; intersectionality; cross-sectional survey asylum-seekers; refugees; LGBTIQ; healthcare utilization; Germany; mental health; chronic illness; intersectionality; cross-sectional survey
MDPI and ACS Style

Gottlieb, N.; Püschmann, C.; Stenzinger, F.; Koelber, J.; Rasch, L.; Koppelow, M.; Al Munjid, R. Health and Healthcare Utilization among Asylum-Seekers from Berlin’s LGBTIQ Shelter: Preliminary Results of a Survey. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 4514.

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