The recent publication on the challenges of reaching immigrants with HPV vaccination is interesting1. Luque et al reported 'Numerous vaccination barriers continue to impact HPV vaccine uptake in the Hispanic immigrant population in the US South'1.
This finding is not unexpected. The problem of healthcare provision for immigrants is a major equity concern worldwide. Due to the status of immigrants it is assumed that 'lower than standard' health care can be expected. Indeed, previous reports have mentioned the prevalence of the health problems among immigrants; however, the real issue for discussion is a low standard of care2.
A common obstacle to healthcare provision for immigrants is that the cost of care is not adequately supported by host countries. 'To treat every patient with the same care and diligence, regardless of ethnicity, religion, nationality, social condition', as the Hippocratic Oath states, is what requires attention in the care of immigrants3.
Somsri Wiwanitkit PEd & Viroj Wiwanitkit MD
Wiwanitkit House, Bangkhae
1. Luque JS, Raychowdhury S, Weaver M. Health care provider challenges for reaching Hispanic immigrants with HPV vaccination in rural Georgia. Rural and Remote Health 12: 1975. (Online) 2012. Available: http://www.rrh.org.au (Accessed 5 June 20120).
2. Marmot MG, Adelstein AM, Bulusu L. Lessons from the study of immigrant mortality. Lancet 1984; 1(8392): 1455-1457.
3. Moltrasio A. The health and welfare of migrant workers as a factor in business competitiveness. Giornale Italiano di Medicina del Lavoro ed Ergonomia 2011; 33(2Suppl): 26-28.