Differences in Self-Reported Health and Unmet Health Needs Between Government Assisted and Privately Sponsored Syrian Refugees: A Cross-Sectional Survey
Between November 2015 and January 2017, the Government of Canada resettled over 40,000 Syrian refugees through different sponsorship programs (GAR and PSR). Timely access to healthcare is essential for good health and successful integration. However, refugee support differs depending on sponsorship program, which may lead to differences in healthcare service access and needs. A cross-sectional study with a sample of Syrian refugees was conducted to assess healthcare access, and perceived physical and mental health status. Results indicate demographic and healthcare access differences between GARs and PSRs. GARs reported significantly lower perceived physical and mental health, as well as, higher unmet healthcare needs than PSRs. GARs are among the most vulnerable refugees; they report higher needs, more complex medical conditions and tend to have more difficulty re-settling. These factors likely combine to help explain lower self-reported health and higher health needs in our sample compared to PSRs.
KeywordsSyrian refugees Canada Mental health Physical health Healthcare access and health needs
This research study was funded by the Toronto Central Local Health Integration Network.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
No competing interests.
This study received ethics approval from CAMH and York University boards.
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