Immigrant Health in the Press
Judge blocks Trump administration from denying asylum claims to immigrants who cross border illegally (11/20/18)
Trump Dreams Up Another Immigrant Crisis (11/12/18)
A revolution in oral health (11/15/18)
The health care repeal effort is dead (11/14/18)
"The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is considering a plan that would drastically and unilaterally restrict legal immigration to only the wealthiest and most privileged applicants. An archaic federal immigration provision called the “public charge” test is currently being drafted by the Trump administration. Immigrants coming to the United States would generally fail this new rewritten test if they had a medical condition and no source of subsidized health insurance. The test also places a premium on an applicant’s income and assets. Applicants must make at least 250 percent of the federal poverty guidelines, which, in 2018, means $30,350 for a one-person household and $62,750 for a four-person household. By comparison, the average American working full-time typically makes around $51,640 for men and $41,554 for women."
"The Supreme Court’s decision allowing the third iteration of President Trump’s travel ban to become permanent immigration policy could have far-reaching effects on the health care system because of a little-appreciated fact: That system relies heavily on foreigners, including foreigners from the list of seven banned countries. In a 5-4 decision Tuesday, the court upheld the current version of the travel ban — which means the administration can refuse some immigrants and visa holders from Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen entry to the US. This means would-be doctors, nurses, and home care aides (or their family members) from these countries will have a hard time entering the US, even when they qualify for the administration’s waiver program. In many ways, the health system is already stretched too thin..."
The debate over the crisis has spun off into many tangents: whether there is any federal law requiring family separation (there isn’t), about America’s rules for asylum seekers, and whether Congress will do anything about it as the House prepares to take up immigration legislation this week.
But as much as the family separation crisis is a story about immigration policy and our country’s values, it is also a health crisis.
Dr. Colleen Kraft, president of the American Academy of Pediatrics, visited a shelter housing unaccompanied minors ages 12 and younger in April. She described walking into a toddler room where, instead of finding a group of rambunctious kids, she found quiet ones and, in the middle of the floor, a little girl crying uncontrollably.
I asked Kraft to explain the health risks that come with separating kids from their parents.
”Every bit of their health is predicated on a foundational relationship with a caring adult,” she said. Their parents, in other words..."
But since her visit, Kraft has been trying to convince them otherwise.
She's released statements condemning the practice of separating families, warning that children torn from their parents experience serious short- and long-term health consequences.
The association she leads -- which represents more than 65,000 members across the United States -- has sent multiple letters to the Department of Homeland Security, calling for a change of course.
The pediatricians' group isn't the only one that's taken a stand. So have the American College of Physicians and the American Psychiatric Association. Together, the three organizations represent more than 250,000 doctors in the United States..."
Violations from the last year at Southwest Key Program shelters include inadequate supervision and lack of timely medical care, according to the news service. Children were also given medications they were allergic to, it added.
A spokesperson for Southwest Key, which operates 16 shelters housing 2,600 children, told the AP that the violations found account for less than 1 percent of the standards that inspectors reviewed..."
“Right now, I’m very happy. Always thankful to God first,” Jocelyn said.
Jocelyn's son James was finally returned to his mother’s side earlier this week.
We’re only using their first names at the request of their immigration attorney.
“I think he's still adapting to everything on the outside,” Jocelyn said.
According to experts, James will have a lot of adjusting to do.
“Attachment disorders are a difficult disorder to work with and cope with,” Celeste Nevarez said.
Nevarez is a therapist with Emergence Health Network..."
"It’s affecting me," Fred said (we're not using his last name because he fears deportation). "The way I live my life. Like right now, I’m shaking. My voice is shaking, and this happens every day to be honest."
If Fred is deported, the nursing home will struggle to replace him. The long-term care industry relies on immigrants to fill relatively low-paying jobs, from laundry workers to home health care aides.
Ten-thousand people hit age 65 each day. According to federal health officials, half of these baby boomers will need some kind of long-term care, like a nursing home, or a home health aide.
The long-term care industry is already facing a labor shortage. And now, plans to cut immigration threaten to make the problem worse..."
The report, set to be released in the coming weeks by the White House OMB, seeks to move safety-net programs, including food stamps, into HHS, two sources with knowledge of the plan told POLITICO. The plan would also propose changing the name of the sprawling department, while separately seeking cuts at USAID and the State Department..."
Last month, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that undocumented immigrant children crossing the border would be separated from their families. Since then, President Donald Trump has repeatedly blamed his administration’s own policy on Democrats. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen has also equated family separation at the border with U.S. citizen children being removed from convicted parents. Parents at the border haven’t been convicted, only charged, and are likely fleeing persecution — and seeking asylum is a right afforded under U.S. law..."
In an unsigned order with no recorded dissent, the highest U.S. court threw out an appeals court ruling that allowed an undocumented teenager held in federal custody, known only as "Jane Doe," to receive an abortion.
The Supreme Court ordered lower courts to disregard the ruling as "moot" because Jane Doe had already undergone the procedure. The court did not, however, make a ruling on the merits of the legal issues presented in the case, writing that the justices did not have to "delve into the factual disputes by the parties in order to answer" the mootness question..."
Janet Solis, an immigration community coordinator for Building Healthy Communities, distributed the packets. The daughter of immigrants, Solis made a personal pitch in Spanish: “Ever since I was little, my dad always said to me, ‘If something happens to us, your mom and me, you’ll find the documents under the bed and you’ll go stay with your Uncle Hector.’ It’s like that, only more legal.”
Advocacy organizations such as the San Francisco-based Immigrant Legal Resource Center are pushing these contingency plans nationwide, in states as dispersed as Georgia, Washington and Massachusetts. Many immigrant families include a mix of U.S. citizens, legal residents and those here without legal permission. Any given day feels like a roll of the dice: Parents are unsure whether a child’s “Dreamer” designation will hold, and children don’t know when a parent might be picked up by authorities..."
Researchers found that after DACA was implemented, there was a surge in enrollment of these U.S.-born kids aged 5 and younger in the national Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) benefit program.
The findings highlight the potential for multigenerational effects of immigration policy and should be considered in ongoing immigration debates, the study authors say..."
The proposal — which would build on Gov. Jerry Brown’s 2015 decision to extend health coverage to all children, regardless of immigration status — is one of the most daring examples yet of blue-state Democrats thumbing their nose at President Donald Trump as they pursue diametrically opposed policies, whether on immigration, climate change, legalized marijuana or health care..."