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Review

Communication Experiences in Primary Healthcare with Refugees and Asylum Seekers: A Literature Review and Narrative Synthesis

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Sydney School of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine and Health, The University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia
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Ask Share Know: Rapid Evidence for General Practice Decisions (ASK-GP), Centre for Research Excellence, Sydney School of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine and Health, The University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia
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Department of Global Health and Development, Faculty of Public Health and Policy, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London WCIE 7HT, UK
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Sydney Health Literacy Lab, Sydney School of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine and Health, The University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Lillian Mwanri, Hailay Gesesew, Nelsensius Klau Fauk and William Mude
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(4), 1469; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18041469
Received: 8 December 2020 / Revised: 28 January 2021 / Accepted: 29 January 2021 / Published: 4 February 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Migration, Resilience, Vulnerability and Migrants’ Health)
Refugee and asylum seeker population numbers are rising in Western countries. Understanding the communication experiences, within healthcare encounters, for this population is important for providing better care and health outcomes. This review summarizes the literature on health consultation communication experiences of refugees and asylum seekers living in Western countries. Seven electronic databases were searched from inception to 31 March 2019. Studies were included if they aimed to improve, assess or report on communication/interaction in the primary health care consultation setting with refugees or asylum seekers, and were conducted in Western countries. A narrative synthesis of the literature was undertaken. Thematic analysis of the 21 included articles, showed that refugees and asylum seekers experience a range of communication challenges and obstacles in primary care consultations. This included practical and relational challenges of organizing and using informal and formal interpreters and cultural understanding of illness and healthcare. Non-verbal and compassionate care aspects of communication emerged as an important factor in helping improve comfort and trust between healthcare providers (HCP) and refugees and asylum seekers during a healthcare encounter. Improvements at the systems level are needed to provide better access to professional interpreters, but also support compassionate and humanistic care by creating time for HCPs to build relationships and trust with patients. View Full-Text
Keywords: refugees; asylum seekers; primary healthcare; general practice; communication; patient-centered care; patient engagement refugees; asylum seekers; primary healthcare; general practice; communication; patient-centered care; patient engagement
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MDPI and ACS Style

Patel, P.; Bernays, S.; Dolan, H.; Muscat, D.M.; Trevena, L. Communication Experiences in Primary Healthcare with Refugees and Asylum Seekers: A Literature Review and Narrative Synthesis. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 1469. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18041469

AMA Style

Patel P, Bernays S, Dolan H, Muscat DM, Trevena L. Communication Experiences in Primary Healthcare with Refugees and Asylum Seekers: A Literature Review and Narrative Synthesis. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(4):1469. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18041469

Chicago/Turabian Style

Patel, Pinika; Bernays, Sarah; Dolan, Hankiz; Muscat, Danielle M.; Trevena, Lyndal. 2021. "Communication Experiences in Primary Healthcare with Refugees and Asylum Seekers: A Literature Review and Narrative Synthesis" Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 18, no. 4: 1469. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18041469

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