The use of emergency department and outpatient clinics by Syrian refugees
Journal of Global Health
Displacement after a war or an armed conflict always leads to unexpected health problems, both among migrating people and in places to which new people have migrated. This study aimed to determine the health care needs and trends of Syrian patients. Methods This retrospective study was conducted in a secondary care hospital in the city of Nevşehir, in central Turkey, between January 2013 and December 2017. All Syrian patients who visited the outpatient clinics and emergency department (ED) were
... epartment (ED) were enrolled in the study. Results Over a span of five years, 41 723 Syrian patients visited the hospital' s outpatient clinics and ED. The patients' median age was 23 (inter-quartile range (IQR) = 7-34), and 57.7% of them were female. In 2017, one-third of the Syrian patients visited the ED, a rate that was higher than that found among local patients (30.3% vs 25.0%, P < 0.001, respectively). The rate of pediatric clinic admissions among Syrian patients was about four times greater than the rate of local patients (20.1% vs 5.2%, P < 0.001, respectively), and Syrians' rate of admission to the obstetrics and gynecology clinic was about three times greater than the rate of local patients' admissions (12.3% vs 4.3%, P < 0.001, respectively). Conclusions This study showed that Syrian patients' visits to the hospital, and especially the ED, are increasing. Further, the needs and expectations of these patients in terms of health care are different from local demands. New approaches should be applied to provide an appropriate use of health care facilities.