Immigrant and Refugee Health

Immigrant and Refugee Health Committee

To learn more or contribute, please contact the committee leader(s) via email:

Committee Leaders:

Padma Swamy


Interested in partnering with or joining our newly-formed Immigrant and Refugee Health Committee? Contact the committee leader today for more information, or attend our next committee meeting! (Visit calendar section for meeting information)

Unacceptable Reality

Texas ranks second in number of refugees resettled in the US (Pew Research Center), and 57% of children in Texas live in a home where at least one parent has a difficulty speaking English (KidsCount 2014). According to Migration Policy Institute, 1.5 million people in Texas are undocumented and therefore have limited access to health care services.

Committee Goals


Educating health care providers on the unique health needs of immigrants and refugees:

  • Conducting trainings on how to work with interpreters
  • How to document in a chart for immigrant populations from a legal perspective
  • Providing trainings on the organizations that interface with immigrants and refugees, such as the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), Institute on Migration (IOM), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and more
  • Assist in linking patients to trauma informed care and appropriate mental health services

Educating health care providers on resources available in the community to assist immigrant and refugee populations with social needs that impact health.


  • Assessing the impact of current policies on immigrant/refugee access to health care services
  • Assessing how culture, legal status, and other social determinants affect certain health issues


  • Working with multiple organizations who interface with immigrants and refugees to provide trainings on navigating the health care system.
  • Partnering with local organizations addressing the unique medical, social and legal needs of immigrants and refugees


  • Collecting stories and data that highlight how current immigration policies like SB4 impact health
  • Writing op-eds, policy briefs and blog pieces to advocate for the health needs of this population