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Refugee Health Promotion and Disease Prevention (RHPDP) Initiative

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An initiative entitled "Points of Wellness" has been created to help develop and implement health promotion and disease prevention activities and programs within refugee communities. This initiative is a collaborative effort between the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)/Refugee Mental Health Program, and the Office of Global Health Affairs (OGHA).


"Points of Wellness" is an approach to physical and mental health that aims to increase awareness and interest in health promotion and disease prevention programs targeting refugees. Information and tools are provided to assist organizations in these endeavors.



To increase the health and well-being of refugee populations in the United States by:

  • Providing technical assistance regarding the development, funding, management, and implementation of health promotion and disease prevention programs
  • Encouraging the development and implementation of community mental health/public health modalities of improving or maintaining good physical and mental health
  • Supporting systems of care that promote good physical and mental health in an integrated, seamless way; this includes creating community education programs on diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer
  • Contributing to an overall reduction of unmanaged chronic health conditions

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Recent Activities

  • Development of a Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Toolkit for use by those who work to promote the well-being of refugees.  The toolkit includes guidelines for developing and implementing community health programs, and is available online at
  • Implementation of an email list for refugee health information, including funding opportunities. The email list can be accessed at the Refugee Health archives at the National Institutes of Health.


Contact Information

For further information about the RHPDP Initiative, please feel free to contact one of the following Points of Wellness representatives:


Ms Marta Brenden, Project Director, ORR

(202) 205-3589


Captain John Tuskan, Director, Refugee Mental Health Program, SAMHSA

(240) 276-1845


Dina Danjani, Humanitarian and Refugee Health Affairs, OGHA

(301) 974-4378

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Last revised: October 05, 2007