Quotation Kohlenberger, Judith, Buber-Ennser, Isabella, Rengs, Bernhard, Leitner, Sebastian , Landesmann, Michael. 2019. Barriers to health care access and service utilization of refugees in Austria: Evidence from a cross-sectional survey. Health Policy. 123 (9), 833-839.


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Abstract

This paper provides evidence on (1) refugees’ subjective well-being, (2) their access and barriers to health care utilization and (3) their perception of health care provision in Austria, one of the countries most heavily affected by the European ‘refugee crisis.’ It is based on primary data from the Refugee Health and Integration Survey (ReHIS), a cross-sectional survey of roughly five hundred Syrian, Iraqi and Afghan refugees. Results indicate that refugees’ self-rated health falls below the resident population’s, in particular for female and Afghan refugees. Whereas respondents state overall high satisfaction with the Austrian health system, two in ten male and four in ten female refugees report unmet health needs. Most frequently cited barriers include scheduling conflicts, long waiting lists, lack of knowledge about doctors, and language. Although treatment costs were not frequently considered as barriers, consultation of specialist medical services frequently associated with co-payment by patients, in particular dental care, are significantly less often consulted by refugees than by Austrians. Refugees reported comparably high utilization of hospital services, with daycare treatment more common than inpatient stays. We recommend to improve refugees’ access to health care in Austria by a) improving the information flow about available treatment, in particular specialists, b) fostering dental health care for refugees, and c) addressing language barriers by providing (web-based) interpretation services.

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Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Journal article
Journal Health Policy
Citation Index SSCI
WU-Journal-Rating new STRAT-B, WH-B
Language English
Title Barriers to health care access and service utilization of refugees in Austria: Evidence from a cross-sectional survey
Volume 123
Number 9
Year 2019
Page from 833
Page to 839
Reviewed? Y
URL https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0168851018305335?via%3Dihub
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.healthpol.2019.01.014
Open Access Y
Open Access Link https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0168851018305335

Associations

Projects
Refugee Health and Integration Survey
People
Kohlenberger, Judith (Details)
External
Buber-Ennser, Isabella (VID/ÖAW, Austria)
Landesmann, Michael (Wiener Institut für Internationale Wirtschaftsvergleiche, Austria)
Leitner, Sebastian (Wiener Institut für Internationale Wirtschaftsvergleiche, Austria)
Rengs, Bernhard (VID/ÖAW, Austria)
Organization
Institute for Social Policy IN (Details)
Research areas (ÖSTAT Classification 'Statistik Austria')
5404 Demography (Details)
5428 Migration research, emigration - (Details)
5911 Social policy (Details)
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