On March 12, 2011, the Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans joined with five other sponsors to host the Burma Health Forum, which aimed to create greater dialogue pertaining to the health needs of refugees from Burma in Minnesota. The forum featured keynote speaker, Dr. Myo Nyunt, who provided political and historical background information on the country of Burma; a first-hand refugee story from Eh Tha Khu, a newly arrived Karen refugee to Minnesota; and several panelists who work in both systems navigation and health integration for refugee community members in the state of Minnesota.
- Introduction, Sarah Chute, Acting Refugee Health Coordinator, MN Dept. of Health (MDE)
- Keynote Address, Dr. Myo Nyunt, Director/Founder, Community Improvement and Development
- Reception and Placement, Rachele King, Director of Refugee Services, Minnesota Council of Churches
- Refugee Health Screening in MN, Sue Dicker, Nurse Consultant, MDE
- Karen Organization of MN (KOM), Danny Vang, Program Manager, KOM
- Managed Care, Carol Berg, Public Health Manager, UCare
- Healthcare for the Burmese and Karen Communities in MN, Dr. Jim Letts, Medical Director,HealthEast Roselawn Clinic
- Language Services, Kyle Yang, Chief Operating Officer, The Language Banc
- Eliminating Health Disparities Initiative, Mimi Oo, Program Coordinator,African & American Friendship Association for Cooperation and Development
- Community Health Workers as Health Care Home Care Coordinators, Molly Jacques, Program Manager,Hennepin County Medical Center
- All presentations combined
It is the hope of this council and its sponsors that this forum will be the first of many discussions about how to better address the various healthcare needs of refugees from Burma living in Minnesota. It is imperative that healthcare providers work with both local refugee integration organizations as well as the Burma community itself to gain a greater understanding of the unique cultural, linguistic, and personal barriers that prevent these citizens from getting the care they need and deserve.
Call to Action: Without action, there is no change.
- Contact your legislators: Individuals, groups, or organizations interested in speaking to legislators to advocate on behalf of the community from Burma may contact the Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans.
- Connecting with stakeholders: Want to be more involved in discussing way to improve health outcomes and health care access for refugees from Burma? Please contact the Council at firstname.lastname@example.org as a way to get in touch with organizations and individuals working on this topic.