Center for Immigrant Health
Explore This Program
The interdisciplinary MGH Center for Immigrant Health (CIH) fosters excellence in clinical care, education, advocacy and research to improve the health and wellbeing of immigrants, across all departments and clinical sites at MGH and within the broader community. The Center’s programming serves the needs of both immigrant patients and staff.
The MGH CIH seeks to ensure that all MGH employees are equipped with the knowledge and resources to meet the needs of immigrant patients, and that all immigrant patients — regardless of legal status — feel safe accessing care to optimize their health.
The six pillars of the MGH CIH include:
- Resource development and navigation. The MGH CIH provides outreach and guidance to help immigrant patients, staff, and their families navigate access to hospital and community resources, including medical, dental, insurance, legal, educational, housing, nutrition, and interpretation services. All resources are vetted to ensure that patients can access them without undue fear of repercussions for their immigration status.
- Clinical programming. The MGH CIH clinical team includes expertise in internal medicine, pediatrics, and psychiatry. The Center will develop mental health programming to address resettlement and acculturation stressors as well as the trauma and isolation experienced by some members of the immigrant community. The Center will also develop culturally informed nutrition programming to address food insecurity and risk factors for obesity.
- Education. The MGH CIH collaborates with experts in immigrant and refugee health to develop and disseminate best practices in caring for immigrant patients through educational modules for staff and clinical electives for students and residents.
- Advocacy. The MGH CIH leverages its expertise in immigrant health to advocate for legislation and policies that promote the wellbeing of our immigrant patients and staff and their families.
- Quality improvement and research. The MGH CIH seeks to identify opportunities to improve the quality of clinical care for Limited English Proficiency (LEP) patients, and to study factors that affect immigrant health outcomes.
- Inclusivity. The MGH CIH collaborates with the MGH Immigrant Health Coalition (IHC) and multiple institutional partners to promote a welcoming environment at MGH that celebrates our patients’ and staff’s diverse backgrounds and immigration histories.
Who We Are
Under the guidance of an Executive Steering Committee consisting of leadership from across hospital departments, and with input from a Community Advisory Board and the MGH Immigrant Health Coalition, the MGH CIH is led by Dr. Fiona Danaher (Pediatrics), Dr. Rashmi Jasrasaria (Internal Medicine), and Dr. Rahel Bosson (Psychiatry). The MGH CIH team currently includes an Immigrant Health Resource Specialist and a program coordinator. As its clinical programming expands, the team will add community health workers with mental health training and a nutritionist with cross-cultural expertise.
The MGH Immigrant Health Coalition (IHC) is an interdisciplinary network of more than 200 MGH employees dedicated to advancing the health and social equity of immigrants. The IHC meets monthly to discuss opportunities to promote immigrant health, and maintains an active listserv.
For inquiries or for MGH employees/students seeking to join the IHC, email MGHImmigrantHealthCoalition@partners.org.
To learn more about efforts to promote immigrant health across the Boston area, visit the Greater Boston Health & Law Immigrant Solidarity Network and join the listserv at www.hlisn.org.
Migration Is Beautiful
Migration Is Beautiful is an initiative that aims to bring awareness and celebrate the diversity that comes with immigration. It uses the monarch butterfly as a symbol of migration. Each year, the monarch butterfly begins its journey in central Mexico and goes back to the United States and Canada. In this way, the butterfly has become a symbol of migration as a natural occurrence and of the importance of migration to the human experience. Many MGH employees wear monarch butterfly stickers on their ID badges as a symbol of solidarity and welcome to immigrant patients.
News: Mass General Celebrates "Migration Is Beautiful"
Hear our director, Dr. Fiona Danaher, speak about the campaign and the launch of the MGH Center for Immigrant Health.
2022 Migration is Beautiful Campaign — Schedule of Events
- Monday, 12/12 from 4:15 to 5:00 pm on Zoom:
Addressing Gender-Based Violence Among Immigrants
Come hear Maggie Gillen, the MGH Strength & Serenity and Center for Immigrant Health’s research assistant, share some basics for providers on a trauma-informed approach toward addressing gender-based violence and specific resources for immigrant communities.
- Tuesday, 12/13 from 12-1 pm on Zoom:
New Migrant Arrivals – Martha’s Vineyard, Chelsea, and MGH’s Response
Join a panel discussion with Iván Espinoza-Madrigal, executive director of Lawyers for Civil Rights; Gladys Vega, executive director of La Colaborativa; and Joseph R. Betancourt, MD, MPH, senior vice president for Equity and Community Health
- Tuesday, 12/13 from 7-8 pm on Zoom:
Join Dr. Carlos Torres to discuss New York Times Best Seller Solito by Javier Zamora
- Wednesday, 12/14 from 12-1 pm on Zoom:
Caring for Immigrant Communities – Best Practices at the bedside and across the health system
Join the core leadership team of the MGH Center for Immigrant Health, Pediatrician Dr. Fiona Danaher (Director), Psychiatrist Dr. Rahel Bosson (Associate Director), and Internist Dr. Rashmi Jasrasaria (Associate Director) as they discuss challenges immigrants face in achieving good health and best practices one can integrate into their clinical encounters with the MGH Hospital Medicine Unit and others.
- Thursday, 12/15 from 10-11 am on Zoom:
Health Law Advocates Training
Join this training to learn more about access to care for immigrant patients with expert attorneys from Health Law Advocates.
- Thursday, 12/15 from 12-1 pm at O’Keefe Auditorium (first floor of MGH Main Campus, 55 Fruit Street, Boston MA 02130)
Raising the Floor
Join us for a special community screening of the Best Short Documentary at this year’s Globe Docs film festival! This 30-min documentary features the Chelsea Eats Program (the largest basic income pilot in American history: one that gave 2000 individuals and families direct payments of up to $400 a month with no strings attached) and captures how the majority immigrant city of Chelsea persevered and prevailed during the first surges of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Sabrina Avilés, Director, and Jenny Alexander, Producer, will be available for Q&A after the film screening.
Download the Migration Is Beautiful Zoom Background and Virtual Stickers