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Journal of Refugee & Global Health

Abstract

Objective: Children are 1/2 of the world’s refugees and often have intestinal parasites. This study seeks to determine the intestinal burden and pre-departure treatment of Kentucky pediatric refugees.

Methods: This is a chart review of Kentucky pediatric refugee health screening data from 2012-2017. Stool culture results from children arriving through refugee camps were compared to non-camp children. They were placed into 3 regional groups and analyzed based on CDC pre-departure treatment recommendations.

Results: Of the 3,199 records, 1,653 had stool testing. 354 (51%) refugee camp children tested positive compared to 326 (33.9%) non-camp children. Giardia and Blastocystis were most commonly identified. Treatment aligned with CDC guidelines 64.7% of the time. CDC compliance was 83%, 79.8%, and 30.2% from Regions 1, 2, and 3 respectively.

Discussion: Pre-departure treatment of pediatric refugees needs improved compliance with CDC recommendations through education of refugee camp workers. Giardia and Blastocystis are common and metronidazole is recommended for symptomatic children.

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