Estimates show that Suffolk has population of about 1500 Gypsies and Travellers and 1200 Romas. These communities have a history of suffering racism and discrimination. They have poor life expectancy and an attitude of fatalism to health and healthcare.
What was the problem?
PHAST was commissioned by Suffolk County Council to evaluate the means by which Gypsies, Travellers and Romas health could be improved.
How did PHAST help?
PHAST conducted a needs assessment which highlighted the independent lifestyle of Gypsies and Travellers and the poor living conditions of Romas. PHAST found that the children were receiving poor education and that the communities had strongly held health beliefs have been passed on for centuries. The report gave examples of well conducted initiatives to promote NHS services amongst the communities.
What was the Impact?
This report led to many recommendations such as implementing a clear health strategy, providing extended time for health workers to facilitate access to health and social services as well as strategies to seek integration of these communities.