Equitable health-care access: the experiences of refugee and refugee claimant mothers with an ill preschooler.
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Little is known about access to health services for preschool children in refugee or refugee claimant families living in Canada. This mixed-methods study collected information from a purposive sample of 55 mothers living in a second-tier city in the province ofOntario.The findings raise questions about equitable access to primary health care for these families. Factors other than need determined whether a mother was able to access care for her child. Although all the children had been seen by a doctor during the preceding year and 78% had a regular care provider, mothers faced difficulties accessing care when needed. These difficulties were related to low income, problems with health insurance, lack of knowledge about available services, fear of being judged as a parent, and perceived discrimination. The findings have implications for care providers, including those working in settlement services, child protection, and public health.
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