Improving access to multilingual health information for newcomers to Canada

Victoria Gallo Stampino

Abstract




Canada's immigrant and refugee population is a vulnerable group in our health care system with specific information needs. Newcomers to Canada face certain socioeconomic, cultural–linguistic, and systemic barriers to access to health care that government, social agencies, and health care organizations work to overcome. To address some of the communication barriers, many health organizations develop information resources such as online brochures and education handouts. Several organizations offer specifically tailored multilingual publications to meet newcomers' information needs and write them using cross-cultural approaches. However, multilingual health information may be hard to locate and is not readily available through major Canadian consumer Web sites. This article discusses the advantages of sharing multilingual publications online and asks whether a central portal or repository is a possible solution for making publications more widely available across Canada.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5596/c07-003

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