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Increasing Access for Speakers of Kmhmu
For several years, the Richmond Health Center has had interpreters and clinicians who speak Mien and Lao, but not Kmhmu. After a meeting with a group of doctors and the Kmhmu community, monthly "group visits" were started a year ago, said Dr. Troy Kaji, who runs the group with the help of an interpreter. Separate group visits also were started for Mien patients. Health issues are presented in a culturally appropriate way and the support group environment helps build the clients' confidence about their own ability to make healthy lifestyle decisions, he said.
The verbal delivery of information also was important because the Kmhmu language is primarily a spoken one, he said. "They definitely have a new way to access health care in their own language and in a place to discuss health issues among themselves," Troy said. The group has been successful in empowering the clients. "We build their confidence so they can take better care of themselves," Troy said.
For more information about the Kmhmu and Mien groups, e-mail Troy Kaji, MD (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Content provided by the Reducing Health Disparities Initiative.