Health for refugees and asylum seekers
SEMPHN is committed to the values of acceptance and equitable access to healthcare. We offer the following resources to support community members, frontline staff, healthcare providers and general practice staff who work with refugees and asylum seekers.
The following are informative videos for people working and interested in refugee and asylum seeker health.
Jacqui McBride from Monash Health discusses detailed aspects of Refugee Health, care pathway options and organisations that can support case workers and health workers delivering services in this space.
Jayne Birkett from the City of Greater Dandenong discusses refugee training for caseworkers and health providers.
Dr Mark Timlin from Monash Health discusses primary care and communicable diseases.
E-Learning Modules on Practice Coaching: This refugee Health Module includes five video lessons from Refugee Health Fellows and other experts in the field of refugee health working in Victoria’s Local Health Network (Monash, RCH, Royal Melbourne).
- Identifying refugees and asylum seekers in your general practice
- Working with interpreters and ensuring effective communication
- Conducting a refugee health assessment and common illnesses
- Immunisation for asylum seekers and refugees
- Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS): Focus on refugee health.
On completion (approx. two hours), participants are issued a Certificate of Completion which can be used to demonstrate CPD.
Register for, or access the Practice Coaching Website here.
Information and contacts
- South East Region Refugee and Asylum Seeker Service Directory
- This directory has been developed by Monash Health Refugee & Asylum Seeker Health, with support from Deakin University and provides contact details for services in the South Eastern Region of Melbourne that support Refugees and Asylum Seekers (updated September 2021).
- Refugee health clinics in metropolitan Melbourne, regional and rural Victoria
- The Victorian Refugee Health Network has developed a list of specialist refugee health outreach services. These services are available through Community Health Centres and public hospital outpatient services.
- Refugee and asylum seeker health services – Guidelines for the community health program
- These Victorian State Government guidelines for people working in refugee health have key information regarding system support, policies and entitlements and shared care planning.
- Victorian State government – main page on refugee health
- Asylum seeker information sheet for Victorian health services
- Engaging and supporting general practice in refugee health
- This Victorian Refugee Health Network project was aimed at developing and trialling an approach to engaging with general practices to promote the delivery of accessible and appropriate healthcare to people from refugee backgrounds, including those seeking asylum.
Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS) National
- Online register for TIS National services, including fee paying and free services
- A guide to accessing and using TIS for health professionals working in private practice
- Pre booked phone interpreter form
- On-site interpreting may be more appropriate for appointments of sensitive or serious nature, extended appointments or scheduled appointment with a client.
- The cultural dictionary and directory of people from cultural and linguistically diverse backgrounds - a resource to increase cultural understanding for service providers. The largest community groups in the south east region are from Afghanistan, Iraq, Burma/Myanmar and Iran.
Healthcare specific information
Healthcare Assessment and Medicare
- Medicare Health Assessment for refugees and other humanitarian entrants
- Health assessment for refugee and other humanitarian entrants - questions and answers
- Beyondblue translated resources
- Victorian Refugee Health Network has an extensive refugee health assessment based on best practice evidence and expert consultation.
- Mental Health in Multicultural Australia
- Immunisation: Information for case workers and health service staff from the Victorian Refugee Health Network
- Immunisation schedule for newly arrived refugees from The Royal Children’s Hospital
- Immunisation schedule Victoria 2016
- Vaccines – eligibility criteria for free vaccines
- Recommendations for comprehensive post-arrival health assessment for people from refugee-like backgrounds (2016 edition)
- The 2016 updated guidelines contain information regarding infectious disease, non-infectious disease and prevalence rates.
- One page checklist of recommendations for comprehensive post-arrival health assessment for people from refugee-like background
- Available from the Australasian Society for Infectious Diseases.
- The Australasian Society of Infectious Disease guidelines for the diagnosis, management and prevention of infections in recently arrived refugees: an abridged outline (2009)
- Background information, guidelines and management for vitamin D from The Royal Children Hospital
- Key health messages for doctors, nurses and allied health relating to vitamin D
- Agreement to treatment directions authorisation of prescribers under 19(5), 32CM or section 41HC of the Therapeutic Act 1989
- The National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS) multicultural diabetes portal
- The multicultural diabetes portal provides health professionals with a broad range of translated diabetes resources relating to managing diabetes and living well in a wide variety of languages.
Learn about your medicines
- National prescribing service - learn about your medicines fact sheet in English and 10 other languages
- Languages include: Arabic, Chinese, Croatian, Greek, Italian, Korean, Macedonian Spanish and Vietnamese.
The following is a list of resources for health professionals and refugee and asylum seekers to help access healthcare in the community, including after-hours. It’s also a good place to start if you’d like to increase your understanding of refugee and asylum seeker experiences.
- South East Region refugee and asylum seeker service directory (alternatively, view the live document here).
- Referral guidance for GPs
- Referral information for refugee and asylum seeker services in Victoria
- Monash Health Refugee Health and Wellbeing - provides a range of services for refugee and asylum seeker communities in our catchment. The website is a great source of information for health professionals.
- Appointment reminder translation tool - the NSW Refugee Health Service’s online Translated Appointment Reminder Translation Tool allows you to translate appointment details into your client’s language. For best uptake, print the translated information onto your practice or organisation’s letter head.
- Victorian Refugee Health Network - a fantastic resource for connecting refugee and asylum seeker community members to culturally appropriate services and cultural organisations.
- Victorian Refugee Health Network - works to develop responsive health service systems that meet the needs of people from refugee backgrounds, including asylum seekers. There are useful information sheets and clinical links and reports, including Talking about health and experiences of using health services for people from refugee backgrounds.
- Beginning a new life in Australia report - a useful introduction for newly arrived permanent and temporary migrants to Australia. The booklet covers information from the different levels of Australian government to Humanitarian Settlement Services.
- Healthcare for Refugees and Asylum Seekers (brochures available in five languages)
South Eastern Melbourne PHN acknowledges the traditional custodians of the land our catchment covers, the Boon Wurrung and Wurundjeri people. We pay respect to them, their culture and their Elders past, present and future, and uphold their relationship to this land.
While the Australian Government Department of Health has contributed to the funding of this website, the information on this website does not necessarily reflect the views of the Australian Government and is not advice that is provided, or information that is endorsed, by the Australian Government. The Australian Government is not responsible in negligence or otherwise for any injury, loss or damage however arising from the use of or reliance on the information provided on this website.