The Importance of Cultural Brokering Work to Address Behavioral Health Disparities

Presented by: Mercedes Avila, PhD

This presentation will describe the work of a Cultural Brokering program developed and implemented in Vermont to address behavioral health disparities in former refugee and immigrant communities.

Presentation Summary:

The goal of the Vermont Cultural Brokering program is to raise awareness about the mental health and substance use treatment, connect community members to needed services, and implement universal screening models that can reduce stigma associated with mental health and substance abuse treatment. Seven Cultural Brokers, from the Somali/Somali Bantu, Congolese, Nepali/Bhutanese, and Arabic speaking communities connect with community members to needed services, and in some cases; has led to reducing suicidal ideation and risk. Results from 5000 screenings and stories will be presented; as well as lessons learned related to culturally responsive approaches and practices that should be considered when working with these populations.

Our Sponsors

Vermont Association of Hospitals
Northeast Telehealth Resource Center (NETRC)
NEPHTC
Vermont Public Health Association
Margolis Healy
UVM Medical Center
Chroma Technology
Vermont Department of Health–Dept. of Maternal and Child Health
Vermont Care Partners
Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense
Vermont Cooperative for Practice Improvement and Innovation
NAMI VT
Image Relay
North Country Hospital
Mt. Ascutney Hospital and Health Center
C & S Wholesale Grocers
Grace Cottage
Cabot
Blue Cross Blue Shield of VT
One Care of VT
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