Author ORCID Identifier

Dina Refki:

Rukhsana Ahmed:

Document Type

White Paper

Publication Date



The COVID-19 pandemic continues to have significant impacts on social determinants of health. Immigrant communities often bear a disproportionate burden of the crisis because of the immigration experience, which serves as an additional social determinant of health. Evidence suggests that these communities are hard hit by economic instability, food insecurities, isolation, lack of safe housing and safe neighborhoods, environmental dynamics that cut them off from systems of support, lack of sufficient access to educational tools that have become critical in remote and digital learning, limited access to health and healthcare resources, low health literacy, and restricted access to culturally and linguistically competent services. In this review we (a) synthesize literature on structural and community level causes of health disparities in immigrant communities; (b) summarize evidence-based interventions that increase collective efficacy in managing social determinants of health in immigrant communities; and (c) recommend strengths and resiliency-based approaches that focus on increasing community capacity to eliminate COVID-19 health disparities.

Contact Author

Dina Refki

University at Albany, State University of New York



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