HeaderImage

MENTAL HEALTH

Category Abstract
Training

Training of service providers:

Author: Fred Bemak
Title: Cross-Cultural Family Therapy With Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: Journal of Strategic and Systematic Therapies
Volume, Issue: Volume 8
Date: Summer 1989
Pages: 22-7
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: Unavailable

Author: J.W. Berry (book review)
Title: Mental Health for Refugees and Other Migrants: Social and Preventative Approaches, by Joseph Westermeyer
Journal Name: Contemporary Psychology
Volume, Issue: Volume 36, Number 10
Date: October 1991
Page: 887
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Author: S. M. Berthold
Title: Spiritism as a Form of Psychotherapy: Implications for Social Work Practice
Journal Name: Social Casework: The Journal of Contemporary Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 70, Number 8
Date: October 1989
Pages: 502-9
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: There are two main spiritist traditions among Puerto Ricans: Mesa Blanca, which originated in Europe and is based on a belief in reincarnation, and Santeria, a synthesis of an African religion and Catholicism that centers on the worship of saints. Many Puerto Ricans practice a blend of these two traditions. Puerto Rican spiritists believe in a spirit world and in the duality of matter and spirit. Spirits can attach themselves to human beings and exert a profound influence on human affairs either by helping or causing harm. Some people possess special abilities to communicate with and control the spirits; centros, or spiritual churches, exist where these spiritually strong individuals can help others. Approximately one-third of all adult Puerto Ricans with mental disorders consult spiritists rather than seeking psychiatric treatment. A discussion examines the Puerto Rican practice of spiritism as a form of psychotherapy so that therapists who work with clients who believe in spiritism can be more aware of their clients’ belief systems. Suggestions are made for social workers and others who work with these clients.

Author: Maurice Eisenbruch
Title: Is Western Mental Health Care Appropriate for Refugees?
Journal Name: Refugee Participation Network
Volume, Issue: Number 11
Date: October 1991
Pages: 25-7
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: Based on research with Cambodian refugees, the author argues that mental health care should include refugees’ own perceptions of the meaning of their trauma, the way in which they express their distress and an understanding of the strategies they use to overcome it. If refugees express the symptoms of ‘post traumatic stress disorder’, this may be the sign of constructive methods of coping with a devastatingly traumatic experience, and not necessarily indicate a disorder. ‘Western’ approaches to therapy may hence be inappropriate.

Authors: Y. Fischman and J. Ross
Title: Group Treatment of Exiled Survivors of Torture
Journal Name: American Journal of Orthopsychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 60, Number 1
Date: January 1990
Pages: 135-42
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Although the symptoms of victims of forced exile and torture can be considered to indicate a type of post-traumatic stress disorder, standard treatment approaches fall short of alleviating the problems of this growing population. A model for time- limited group treatment is presented, and the importance of placing such traumatic experiences in a sociopolitical context is emphasized. The model is illustrated by descriptions of work with a group made up of Central and South American refugees. Theraputic techniques are proposed that focus on symptoms of torture- related post-traumatic stress disorder, allowing members to attain gradual psychological reorganization.

Authors: Elizabeth Gong-Guy, Richard B. Cravens, and Terence Patterson
Title: Clinical Issues in Mental Health Service Delivery to Refugees
Journal Name: The American Psychologist
Volume, Issue: Volume 46, Number 6
Date: June 1991
Page: 642
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: The authors put forth suggestions for improving mental health services for refugees by emphasizing diagnostic assumptions and treatment approaches, recognizing potential problems associated with the use of interpreters and paraprofessionals, and examining the role of consultation, prevention, and outreach services in addressing refugee mental health concerns.

Author: P. Kelley
Title: The Application of Family Systems Theory to Mental Health Services for Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: Journal of Multicultural Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 2, Number 1
Date: 1992
Pages: 1-13
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: This paper describes a training project of work with Southeast Asian refugees using an integrated family systems approach. The author found using a model integrating a structural, strategic, life cycle, and Milan systematic therapy helpful at three levels of the project work: consulting with agencies serving the population, training students for this work, and intervening clinically with the refugees themselves.

Author: Carrington U. Nguyen
Title: Counseling Indochinese Refugee Women Rape Survivors
Journal Name: Administration in Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 45, Number 3
Date: September 1992
Pages: 19-25
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: This study is based on the author’s experience as a counselor of rape survivors and traumatized refugees at two refugee camps in Malaysia. Analysis of the work revealed a particular mental dissonance in the women which resulted from the clash between their culture and new self-concepts necessary for their recovery. It was demonstrated that counseling methods that emphasize self-esteem, personal values, and self-sufficiency are necessary for the recovery of traumatized people in host countries such as Australia and Canada. Information on clients’ psychological and social issues and needs can increase the awareness of support groups regarding this matter. Establishment and training of these women’s groups, composed of volunteers having the same cultural background as the clients, will facilitate the survivors’ access to professional services.

Author: S.B. Strober
Title: Social Work Interventions to Alleviate Cambodian Refugee Psychological Distress
Journal Name: International Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 37, Number 1
Date: January 1994
Pages: 23-5
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: The poll taken at random among 102 Cambodian refugees (May-Aug 1989) served to determine the extent of environmental social support and refugee characteristics in the process of acculturation. Fifty percent of the variation is explained by education, the time spent in the country, and the impact of psychological decline. In addition, the date showed that there was a slight correlation between the observed social support and acculturation adjustment, and that there was a strong correlation between the latter and the lack of psychological decline. Furthermore, there was no significant correlation between the observed social support and psychological collapse. Results suggest that the observed family and community support does not promote acculturation, but rather a lower incidence of psychological decline. In addition, it suggests that traditional family and community support does not count when it comes to alleviating emotional problems. Social work, education, psychological collapse, conjugal support and the amount of time spent in the country offer usable information in the application of social work to the task of reducing emotional problems of these people.

Treatments

Treatment of chronic mental health problems:

General Treatment:

Editors: T. Al-Issa and M. Tousignant
Title: Ethnicity, Immigration, and Psychopathology
Publisher: Plenum Press
Publisher Location: New York
Date: 1997
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: unavailable

Authors: Morton Beiser and R. Gary Edwards
Title: Mental Health of Immigrants and Refugees
Journal Name: New Directions for Mental Health Services
Volume, Issue: Number 61
Date: Spring 1994
Page: 73
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Author: Richard C. Cervantes
Title: Mental Health of Immigrants and Refugees: Proceedings of a Conference Sponsored by the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health and the World Federation for Mental Health (Edited by Wayne H. Holtzman and Thomas H. Borneman)
Journal Name: Contemporary Psychology
Volume, Issue: Volume 37, Number 7
Date: July 1992
Page: 663
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Author: C. I. Dahl
Title: Some Problems of Cross-Cultural Psychotherapy With Refugees Seeking Treatment
Journal Name: The American Journal of Psychoanalysis
Volume, Issue: Volume 49, Number 1
Date: March 1989
Pages: 19-32
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Depression/Adjustment Disorders:

Author: M. Beiser
Title: Influences of Time, Ethnicity, and Attachment on Depression in Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: The American Journal of Psychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 145, Number 1
Date: January 1988
Pages: 46-51
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: Dedra Buchwald et al
Title: Prevalence of Depressive Symptoms Among Established Vietnamese Refugees in the United States
Journal Name: Journal of General Internal Medicine: Official Journal of the Society for Research and Education in Primary Care Internal Medicine
Volume, Issue: Volume 7
Date: January 1, 1994
Page: 43
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: Z. Porte and J. Torney-Purta
Title: Depression and Academic Achievement Among Indochinese Refugee Unaccompanied Minors in Ethnic and Non-Ethnic Placements
Journal Name: American Journal of Orthopsychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 57, Number 4
Date: October 1987
Pages: 536-47
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: A study examined the effects of critical elements in the past and present life experiences of Indochinese minors on their adaptation to the U.S. Of particular concern was whether life satisfaction and depression, the balance of American versus ethnic identity, and academic achievement could be predicted on the basis of placement mode (Caucasian or ethnic foster care, group home, or own family). The refugee adolescents who were resettled with ethnic foster families were significantly less depressed and had higher grade-point-averages than those in foster care with Caucasian families or in group homes. The ongoing presence of an adult of similar ethnicity to the adolescent appeared to mitigate against the stress of adaptation to a new country.

Author: A. Schapiro
Title: Adjustment and Identity Formation of Lao Refugee Adolescents
Journal Name: Smith College Studies in Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 58, Number 3
Date: June 1988
Pages: 157-81
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: An exploratory study was undertaken to ascertain how Laotian refugee adolescents are adjusting to life in the U.S., with particular focus on areas that impact identity formation. Potential problem areas examined were family relationships, school functioning, social status and acceptance, peer relationships, and future planning. The primary stressor encountered by the subjects on their arrival in the U.S. was racial prejudice; other significant factors included academic and language deficits, conflicts with parents, difficulty finding an appropriate peer group, and problems adjusting to lowered social and economic status. All but 3 subjects appeared to be functioning well, although 9 showed signs of depression. Outreach to this group by culturally sensitive and compassionate social workers is warranted.

Author: T. V. Tran
Title: Psychological Traumas and Depression in a Sample of Vietnamese People in the United States
Journal Name: Health and Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 18, Number 3
Date: August 1993
Pages: 184-94
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: This article investigates the relationships among premigration stresses, nightmares, acculturation stresses, personal efficacy, and depression in a sample of 147 adult Vietnamese Americans. The analysis revealed that premigration stresses, nightmares, and acculturation stresses had significant indirect effects on depression. Acculturation stresses diminish personal efficacy, and a weakness of personal efficacy leads to higher depression. Age, gender, marital status, and English language ability also exert differential effects on premigration stresses, nightmares, acculturation stresses, personal efficacy, and depression. Health care professionals, social workers, health care organizations, and social work researchers should be more culturally sensitive when planning and implementing services and developing research instruments.

Torture/trauma/PTSD:

Authors: J. Abe, N. Zane, and K. Chun
Title: Differential Responses to Trauma: Migration-Related Discriminants of Post- Traumatic Stress Disorder Among Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: Journal of Community Psychology
Volume, Issue: Volume 22, Number 2
Date: 1994
Page: 121
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: Lynn R. August and Barbara A. Gianola
Title: Symptoms of War Trauma Induced Psychiatric Disorders: Southeast Asian Refugees and Vietnam Veterans
Journal Name: International Migration Review
Volume, Issue: Volume 21, Number 3
Date: Fall 1987
Pages: 820-32
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: The symptomology of Southeast Asian refugees suffering from mental health disorders is compared with that of Vietnam war veterans suffering from psychiatric disorders related to war trauma, based on a review of published data. Both of these groups share common unresolved feelings and have similar clinical manifestations resulting from the intensity of wartime atrocities. Similarities in the symptoms presented by these two groups suggest that Southeast Asian refugees may also suffer from the same type of war trauma induced psychiatric disorder as the Vietnam war veterans.

Authors: Eve Bernstein Carlson and Rhonda Rosser-Hogan
Title: Cross-Cultural Response to Trauma: A Study of Traumatic Experiences and Posttraumatic Symptoms in Cambodian Refugees
Journal Name: Journal of Traumatic Stress
Volume, Issue: Volume 7
Date: January 1, 1994
Page: 43
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: Unavailable

Author: Maurice Eisenbruch
Title: Is Western Mental Health Care Appropriate for Refugees?
Journal Name: Refugee Participation Network
Volume, Issue: Number 11
Date: October 1991
Pages: 25-7
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: Based on research with Cambodian refugees, the author argues that mental health care should include refugees’ own perceptions of the meaning of their trauma, the way in which they express their distress and an understanding of the strategies they use to overcome it. If refugees express the symptoms of ‘post traumatic stress disorder’, this may be the sign of constructive methods of coping with a devastatingly traumatic experience, and not necessarily indicate a disorder. ‘Western’ approaches to therapy may hence be inappropriate.

Authors: Y. Fischman and J. Ross
Title: Group Treatment of Exiled Survivors of Torture
Journal Name: American Journal of Orthopsychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 60, Number 1
Date: January 1990
Pages: 135-42
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Although the symptoms of victims of forced exile and torture can be considered to indicate a type of post-traumatic stress disorder, standard treatment approaches fall short of alleviating the problems of this growing population. A model for time- limited group treatment is presented, and the importance of placing such traumatic experiences in a sociopolitical context is emphasized. The model is illustrated by descriptions of work with a group made up of Central and South American refugees. Theraputic techniques are proposed that focus on symptoms of torture- related post-traumatic stress disorder, allowing members to attain gradual psychological reorganization.

Authors: E. Hauff and P. Vaglum
Title: Organized Violence and the Stress of Exile: Predictors of Mental Health in a Community Cohort of Vietnamese Refugees Three Years After Resettlement
Journal Name: The British Journal of Psychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 166, Number 3
Date: 1995
Page: 360
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: E. Hauff and P. Vaglum
Title: Vietnamese Boat Refugees: The Influence of War and Flight Traumatization on Mental Health on Arrival in the Country of Resettlement: A Community Cohort Study of Vietnamese Refugees in Norway
Journal Name: Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica
Volume, Issue: Volume 88, Number 3
Date: September 1993
Page: 162
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: J. D. Kinzie and J. Fleck
Title: Psychotherapy with Severely Traumatized Refugees
Journal Name: American Journal of Psychotherapy
Volume, Issue: Volume 41, Number 1
Date: January 1987
Pages: 82-94
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: Richard F. Mollica, Grace Wyshak, and James Lavelle
Title: The Psychosocial Impact of War Trauma and Torture on Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: The American Journal of Psychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 144, Number 12
Date: December 1987
Pages: 1567-72
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: More than 700,000 refugees from Southeast Asia have settled in the U.S. since 1975. Although many have suffered serious trauma, including torture, few clinical reports have described their trauma-related symptoms and psychosocial problems. The authors conducted a treatment study of 52 patients in a clinic for Indochinese. They found that these patients were a highly traumatized group: each had experienced a mean of 10 traumatic events and 2 torture experiences. Many of the patients had concurrent diagnoses of major affective disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder as well as medical and social disabilities associated with their history of trauma. The authors also found that Cambodian women without spouses demonstrated more serious psychiatric and social impairments than all other Indochinese patient groups.

Authors: Rachel Yehuda and Alexander McFarlane
Title: Conflict Between Current Knowledge About Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Its Original Conceptual Basis
Journal Name: The Americal Journal of Psychaitry
Volume, Issue: Volume 152, Number 12
Date: December 1995
Pages: 1705-13
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: The authors’ goal was the explore the historical, political, and social forces that have played a major role in the acceptance of the idea of trauma as a cause of the specific symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and to discuss the impace that current research findings have had on some of the initial conceptualizations of the disorder. The conceptual origins of PTSD are described, and the literature on the prevalence, longitudinal course, phenomenology, and neurobiology of PTSD is reviewed. Paradoxically, there are a series of findings that support the idea that PTSD is a distinct diagnostic entity, but these are different from those originally developed from psychosocial theory and stress research. PTSD has been a controversial diagnosis and is again at a vulnerable point. It is imperative that the field address how current findings challenge the original conceptualizations of this disorder so that the next generation of conceptual issues can be formulated.

Refugee Survivors of Torture: Trauma and Treatment
Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 2001, vol. 32, no. 5, pp. 443-451(9)
Gorman, W
  Abstracted by: Jaime Rall
Abstract:
Given the author's assertion that the practice of torture has increased in recent years, and the unprecedented numbers of torture-surviving refugees fleeing to the United States, the need for psychologists to be prepared and able to work with torture survivors is increasingly well-documented. Refugees are generally typified by having endured extreme abuses of human rights, and the resulting trauma is often exacerbated by the processes of exile, resettlement, status determinations, and the stresses of cross-cultural transitions. The experience of torture " "the deliberate, systematic or wanton infliction of'suffering" (p. 443) " can be further psychologically debilitating. Common psychological sequelae include "blame and shame", somaticization (experience of physical symptoms in response to psychological concerns), denial, repression, and conditions of helplessness, guilt, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder [PTSD]. These symptoms often represent techniques for coping with the extreme cruelty of the torture situation that are now maladaptive in a new setting. Unless treated, these symptoms can shut down" and emotionally isolate the person experiencing them. Despite the clear need for psychotherapeutic treatment for torture survivors, there has been a lack of professionals who are qualified, willing, and emotionally prepared to work with this challenging population. In addition, physical health concerns have often been emphasized in refugee services, to the neglect of mental health needs. This article argues that, for reasons of professional responsibility and social justice, psychologists must assist these survivors in their recovery. A well-developed practice framework for serving this population should incorporate knowledge of refugee and torture experiences with multicultural principles, the psychology of trauma recovery and rehabilitation, and concepts of power and liberation. Multicultural competence includes knowledge of cultural contexts, traditions, understandings, and norms, as well as culturally-specific strengths, supports, vulnerabilities, and risks. Trauma recovery principles are central to the treatment of these multiply traumatized clients. Herman's stage model of trauma rehabilitation (1992) is recommended as a treatment framework for torture survivors. The first stage is establishment of immediate safety in the therapeutic relationship and in the environment, by addressing the client's immediate economic, legal, or medical problems before psychological concerns. The second stage is the reconstruction process, by re-visiting, re-interpreting and re-framing the traumatic experiences in terms that are meaningful and affirming to the client. In this stage, the psychologist must also beware vicarious trauma that s/he might experience after hearing horrifying narratives. The third stage is reconnection, with one's own identity and in relationship with others. A multidisciplinary approach to refugee services can facilitate the use of this model. Finally, concepts of power and liberation are integral to the treatment of refugees. The alienation, domination, and defenselessness inherent in the torture situation, and the added dislocation of exile, underscore the client's experience of power relationships. The use of Herman's stage model within a multicultural framework can systematically address the internalized oppression suffered by survivors, and validate the truth of the injustices they have survived. Engaging in psychological interventions with torture survivors is thus an important way that psychologists can meaningfully promote social justice.

Immigrant and Refugee Communities: Resiliency, Trauma, Policy, and Practice
In Practicing Social Justice, 2003 (edited by Stretch, J J, Burkemper, E M, Hutchison, W J, Wilson, J), pp. 135-158(24)
Schmitz C L, Jacobus M V, Stakeman C, Valenzuela G A, Sprankel J
  Abstracted by: Jaime Rall
Abstract:
The unprecedented numbers of refugees migrating to the United States call for a reassessment of community responses to refugee needs. This chapter opens with an overview of the stressors and obstacles facing refugee families and children throughout the displacement process, and that must inform community responses. Refugees experience extreme stress and trauma at various points in displacement: when fleeing their homeland under conditions of persecution, violence, or oppression; when networks, income, social status, security, and support are lost during the migration process; and when enduring substandard living conditions and acculturating to new cultural norms and practices in the host country. Acculturation is particularly stressful inasmuch as interaction with the new culture may disrupt traditional social, familial, and gender roles. The authors also cite restrictive immigration policies in the United States as having made the latter acculturation process even more difficult for many newcomers (e.g. the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA), The Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act (IIRIRA), and the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDP) in 1996). Models are then outlined that can be used in host communities (and specifically by social work professionals in these communities) when crafting creative responses to the challenges facing these populations. According to the authors, "[s]ocially just social services are needed to assist"refugee communities in coping with not only past traumas and conflicts, but also stresses associated with adjusting to their new environments" (p. 145). Social work practice frameworks that underlie socially just" work with refugees are emphasized, with special reference to strengths-focused perspectives, cross-cultural competence, and empowerment practice. With reference to these frameworks, the range of intervention techniques and settings that can serve refugees is broad, including: counseling services, mental health interventions (especially for PTSD, depression, grief and trauma), policy and advocacy activities, community-building activities, mediation between the refugee and needed services, and the development of refugee organizations. Finally, a community exemplar is presented. The small metropolitan area of Portland, Maine, offers a clear demonstration of how refugee resettlement services, the school system, city departments, and other non-profit services can ideally coordinate their work for the benefit and empowerment of refugee families. Available services include trauma recovery, health clinics, grief counseling, language and job training/placement, inclusive policies and programs in the public school system, and advocacy and empowerment services that address larger policy issues and promote the formation of refugee-focused community organizations. This community exemplifies how a holistic community response, typified by well-coordinated networks and multidisciplinary approaches that combine advocacy with community building, empowerment, and recovery/healing services, best serve refugees. The authors close with a call to social work professionals to strengthen their dedication to the needs and rights of immigrants and refugees to the United States, particularly those who may be negatively affected by the political repercussions of the events of September 11, 2001.

Understanding Mental Health Needs of Southeast Asian Refugees: Historical, Cultural, and Contextual Challenges
Clinical Psychology Review , 1 May 2004 , vol. 24, no. 2, pp. 193-213(21)
Hsu E., Davies C.D., and Hansen D.J.
  Abstracted by: Cindy Bosley
Abstract:
Providing mental health services for refugees is challenging for many reasons, most notably language and cultural barriers. Many clinicians tend to make generalizations about refugees as one group, and still others group large geographic regions of refugees together (i.e. Asians). This article explores the historical, cultural, and contextual challenges of providing mental health support to Southeast Asian Refugees (SEARs). After exploring these challenges, the authors then give an overview of common mental health problems among SEARs, followed by an outline of clinical implications. This information is obtained from a variety of prior research over the past 25 years, including numerous clinical research studies. The authors' primary conclusion is that the complex background and experiences of each individual SEAR must be thoroughly examined if any treatment of mental health problems is to be effective. Examining historical factors is important because the type of loss or trauma that a refugee has faced can influence their mental health problems (and associated symptoms) as well as their reactions to treatment. Thus, historical factors should be taken into account during diagnosis and treatment. Cultural factors will also affect the types of mental health problems and their reactions to treatment, but these factors will also influence refugees' attitudes towards treatment and clinicians in general. For example, children and adolescent SEARs often learn English very quickly and thus acquire large responsibilities within their family. Because this runs counter to the value of respecting and obeying elders, SEARs often develop mental health problems because of their conflicting roles within the family. These, and other issues such as gender roles, sexuality, and religious beliefs, must be taken into account when diagnosing and treating SEARs. Contextual factors in the resettlement process can include financial strains, language difficulties, the employment situation, discrimination, safety, and others. These challenges must also be explored to develop a holistic picture of SEARs and their mental health situation. The most common mental health problems among SEARs are depression, anxiety, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), adjustment disorder, and somatization of mental problems. The authors provide numerous statistics of various mental health problems among particular groups with Southeast Asia , as well as statistics among Southeast Asian youth. Resilience against mental health problems among SEARs can be attributed to factors such as language proficiency, presence of close family members, social support networks within the ethnic community, and others. Based on these examinations of the common mental health problems and associated challenges, the authors conclude with an assessment of clinical implications. These implications include recommendations for assessing mental health problems and for treating mental health problems (long and short-term). The primary recommendation of the authors is to approach each patient (or potential patient) as an individual, and explore the often complex situation of each SEAR. Classifying all SEARs into one, monolithic group will only lead to false generalizations, errant diagnoses, and ineffective treatment.

Refugees' Responses to Mental Health Screening: A Resettlement Initiative
International Social Work, 1 April 2003 , vol. 46, no. 2, pp. 235-250(16)
Ovitt N., Larrison C.R., and Nackerud L.
  Abstracted by: Cindy Bosley
Abstract:
Much research has shown a higher incidence of mental health problems among refugees as compared to the general population. In addition to the challenges of treating refugees' mental health problems, there is also a great challenge in diagnosing them. Other research has shown that there are several major barriers preventing or hindering diagnoses and subsequent treatment. These barriers include refugees not seeking help, lack of accessibility of services, linguistic and cultural barriers in diagnosis and treatment, and conflicting resettlement goals. This article describes a small study of a screening test used to identify mental health problems in Bosnian refugees shortly after arriving in the U.S. The screening tool that is used is the Hopkins Symptom Checklist (HSCL-25), which has been translated into four languages, including Bosnian. The HSCL-25 lists common symptoms of various mental health problems, and asks the respondents to identify any symptoms they are experiencing. The checklist was administered to eight recently-arrived, adult Bosnian refugees, and the results showed most of the refugees reporting at least some symptoms of mental health problems, with one refugee meeting the official criteria warranting treatment. The researchers immediately followed the HSCL-25 with a client questionnaire about the screening instrument and process. The client questionnaire asked questions such as: Was the checklist easy to understand, were the items in the checklist upsetting or difficult to answer, and do you feel that this was an appropriate time to consider these kinds of questions? The refugees responded quite positively to the screening process, noting that the HSCL-25 was helpful, important to refugees, and administered as an appropriate time. Most of the eight refugees also indicated that they had not been screened in this manner before in the resettlement process, nor had anyone even asked these types of questions. The overall conclusions of this study are that the HSCL-25 is an appropriate instrument to use with recently-arrived, adult Bosnian refugees resettled in the U.S., and the HSCL-25 can assist mental health professionals in identifying refugees with symptoms of mental health problems.

Regions

Asia

Southeast Asia (general):

Authors: J. Abe, N. Zane, and K. Chun
Title: Differential Responses to Trauma: Migration-Related Discriminants of Post- Traumatic Stress Disorder Among Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: Journal of Community Psychology
Volume, Issue: Volume 22, Number 2
Date: 1994
Page: 121
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: Lynn R. August and Barbara A. Gianola
Title: Symptoms of War Trauma Induced Psychiatric Disorders: Southeast Asian Refugees and Vietnam Veterans
Journal Name: International Migration Review
Volume, Issue: Volume 21, Number 3
Date: Fall 1987
Pages: 820-32
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: The symptomology of Southeast Asian refugees suffering from mental health disorders is compared with that of Vietnam war veterans suffering from psychiatric disorders related to war trauma, based on a review of published data. Both of these groups share common unresolved feelings and have similar clinical manifestations resulting from the intensity of wartime atrocities. Similarities in the symptoms presented by these two groups suggest that Southeast Asian refugees may also suffer from the same type of war trauma induced psychiatric disorder as the Vietnam war veterans.

Author: M. Beiser
Title: Influences of Time, Ethnicity, and Attachment on Depression in Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: The American Journal of Psychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 145, Number 1
Date: January 1988
Pages: 46-51
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Author: Fred Bemak
Title: Cross-Cultural Family Therapy With Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: Journal of Strategic and Systematic Therapies
Volume, Issue: Volume 8
Date: Summer 1989
Pages: 22-7
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: R. Chi-Ying Chung and K. M. Lin
Title: Help-Seeking Behavior Among Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: Journal of Community Psychology
Volume, Issue: Volume 22, Number 2
Date: 1994
Page: 109
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Author: J. P. Hiegel
Title: Psychosocial and Mental Health Needs of Refugees: Experiences From Southeast Asia
Journal Name: Tropical Doctor
Volume, Issue: Volume 21, Supplement Number 1
Date: 1991
Page: 63
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: Kasumi K. Hirayama, Hisashi Hirayama, and Muammer Cetingok
Title: Mental Health Promotion for Southeast Asian Refugees in the USA Journal Name: International Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 36, Number 2
Date: April 1993
Pages: 119-30
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Author: P. Kelley
Title: The Application of Family Systems Theory to Mental Health Services for Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: Journal of Multicultural Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 2, Number 1
Date: 1992
Pages: 1-13
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: This paper describes a training project of work with Southeast Asian refugees using an integrated family systems approach. The author found using a model integrating a structural, strategic, life cycle, and Milan systematic therapy helpful at three levels of the project work: consulting with agencies serving the population, training students for this work, and intervening clinically with the refugees themselves.

Authors: Richard F. Mollica, Grace Wyshak, and James Lavelle
Title: The Psychosocial Impact of War Trauma and Torture on Southeast Asian Refugees
Journal Name: The American Journal of Psychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 144, Number 12
Date: December 1987
Pages: 1567-72
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: More than 700,000 refugees from Southeast Asia have settled in the U.S. since 1975. Although many have suffered serious trauma, including torture, few clinical reports have described their trauma-related symptoms and psychosocial problems. The authors conducted a treatment study of 52 patients in a clinic for Indochinese. They found that these patients were a highly traumatized group: each had experienced a mean of 10 traumatic events and 2 torture experiences. Many of the patients had concurrent diagnoses of major affective disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder as well as medical and social disabilities associated with their history of trauma. The authors also found that Cambodian women without spouses demonstrated more serious psychiatric and social impairments than all other Indochinese patient groups.

Author: Carrington U. Nguyen
Title: Counseling Indochinese Refugee Women Rape Survivors
Journal Name: Administration in Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 45, Number 3
Date: September 1992
Pages: 19-25
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: This study is based on the author's experience as a counselor of rape survivors and traumatized refugees at two refugee camps in Malaysia. Analysis of the work revealed a particular mental dissonance in the women which resulted from the clash between their culture and new self-concepts necessary for their recovery. It was demonstrated that counseling methods that emphasize self-esteem, personal values, and self-sufficiency are necessary for the recovery of traumatized people in host countries such as Australia and Canada. Information on clients" psychological and social issues and needs can increase the awareness of support groups regarding this matter. Establishment and training of these women's groups, composed of volunteers having the same cultural background as the clients, will facilitate the survivors" access to professional services.

Authors: Z. Porte and J. Torney-Purta
Title: Depression and Academic Achievement Among Indochinese Refugee Unaccompanied Minors in Ethnic and Non-Ethnic Placements
Journal Name: American Journal of Orthopsychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 57, Number 4
Date: October 1987
Pages: 536-47
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: A study examined the effects of critical elements in the past and present life experiences of Indochinese minors on their adaptation to the U.S. Of particular concern was whether life satisfaction and depression, the balance of American versus ethnic identity, and academic achievement could be predicted on the basis of placement mode (Caucasian or ethnic foster care, group home, or own family). The refugee adolescents who were resettled with ethnic foster families were significantly less depressed and had higher grade-point-averages than those in foster care with Caucasian families or in group homes. The ongoing presence of an adult of similar ethnicity to the adolescent appeared to mitigate against the stress of adaptation to a new country.

Vietnam

Authors: Dedra Buchwald et al
Title: Prevalence of Depressive Symptoms Among Established Vietnamese Refugees in the United States
Journal Name: Journal of General Internal Medicine: Official Journal of the Society for Research and Education in Primary Care Internal Medicine
Volume, Issue: Volume 7
Date: January 1, 1994
Page: 43
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: E. Hauff and P. Vaglum
Title: Organized Violence and the Stress of Exile: Predictors of Mental Health in a Community Cohort of Vietnamese Refugees Three Years After Resettlement
Journal Name: The British Journal of Psychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 166, Number 3
Date: 1995
Page: 360
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: E. Hauff and P. Vaglum
Title: Vietnamese Boat Refugees: The Influence of War and Flight Traumatization on Mental Health on Arrival in the Country of Resettlement: A Community Cohort Study of Vietnamese Refugees in Norway
Journal Name: Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica
Volume, Issue: Volume 88, Number 3
Date: September 1993
Page: 162
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: R. H. Nishimoto, K. L. Chau, and R. W. Roberts
Title: The Psychological Status of Vietnamese Chinese Women in Refugee Camps
Journal Name: Journal of Women and Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 4, Number 3
Date: Fall 1989
Pages: 51-64
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: The psychological resources that refugee women bring to bear in refugee camps are important predictors of their and their families" eventual adaptation to their country of final settlement. Reported on is a study of the psychological status of 59 Vietnamese Chinese women in refugee camps in Hong Kong who were awaiting permanent resettlement. The study also examined factors that affected the mental health of these refugees such as the women's report of stressful life events, the availability of social supports, and various aspects of their experience in the refugee camps. Implications for social work services and social policy are presented.

Authors: Tuong Phan and Derrick Silove
Title: The Influence of Culture on Psychiatric Assessment: The Vietnamese Refugee
Journal Name: Psychiatric Services
Volume, Issue: Volume 48, Number 1
Date: January 1997
Pages: 86-90
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: The influence of culture on psychiatric diagnostic assessments remains controversial. The authors outline differences between the emic approach to assessment, which is informed by ethnographic concepts of the centrality of culture in shaping the psyche and its expressions, and the etic approach, which downplays cultural effects and focuses on the universal elements in manifestations of psychological distress. Based on the experience of assessing Vietnamese refugees in Australia, the authors explore semantic, contextual, and conceptual factors that may impede the psychiatric assessment of patients from other cultures. Areas of misinterpretation are illustrated using examples from the Vietnamese language. The authors discuss how variations in politicohistorical experiences within ethnic populations may result in differences in the modes of expressing and understanding mental illness. Recognition of the tension between etic and emic perspectives allows the clinician to draw on the most useful elements of each in assessing and treating individual patients.

Author: T. V. Tran
Title: Psychological Traumas and Depression in a Sample of Vietnamese People in the United States
Journal Name: Health and Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 18, Number 3
Date: August 1993
Pages: 184-94
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: This article investigates the relationships among premigration stresses, nightmares, acculturation stresses, personal efficacy, and depression in a sample of 147 adult Vietnamese Americans. The analysis revealed that premigration stresses, nightmares, and acculturation stresses had significant indirect effects on depression. Acculturation stresses diminish personal efficacy, and a weakness of personal efficacy leads to higher depression. Age, gender, marital status, and English language ability also exert differential effects on premigration stresses, nightmares, acculturation stresses, personal efficacy, and depression. Health care professionals, social workers, health care organizations, and social work researchers should be more culturally sensitive when planning and implementing services and developing research instruments.

Authors: Tran T. Van, R. Wright, and C. H. Mindel
Title: Alienation Among Vietnamese Refugees in the United States: A Causal Approach
Journal Name: Journal of Social Service Research
Volume, Issue: Volume 11, Number 1
Date: 1987
Pages: 59-75
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: According to a survey conducted in 1979, alienation is ranked third among the six areas representing serious problems for Vietnamese refugees. It is preceded only by loss of role identity and loss of self-esteem. A study developed and tested a causal model of alienation among a probability sample of Vietnamese refugees. The findings indicated that marital status, social support, social interaction anxiety, self-identity, and length of time in the U.S. directly predict feelings of alienation. The social support variable, however, was the most important predictor. Background variables for the most part had no notable direct effects on alienation.

Cambodia

Authors: Eve Bernstein Carlson and Rhonda Rosser-Hogan
Title: Cross-Cultural Response to Trauma: A Study of Traumatic Experiences and Posttraumatic Symptoms in Cambodian Refugees
Journal Name: Journal of Traumatic Stress
Volume, Issue: Volume 7
Date: January 1, 1994
Page: 43
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: Unavailable

Author: S. B. Strober
Title: Social Work Interventions to Alleviate Cambodian Refugee Psychological Distress
Journal Name: International Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 37, Number 1
Date: January 1994
Pages: 23-5
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: The poll taken at random among 102 Cambodian refugees (May-Aug 1989) served to determine the extent of environmental social support and refugee characteristics in the process of acculturation. Fifty percent of the variation is explained by education, the time spent in the country, and the impact of psychological decline. In addition, the date showed that there was a slight correlation between the observed social support and acculturation adjustment, and that there was a strong correlation between the latter and the lack of psychological decline. Furthermore, there was no significant correlation between the observed social support and psychological collapse. Results suggest that the observed family and community support does not promote acculturation, but rather a lower incidence of psychological decline. In addition, it suggests that traditional family and community support does not count when it comes to alleviating emotional problems. Social work, education, psychological collapse, conjugal support and the amount of time spent in the country offer usable information in the application of social work to the task of reducing emotional problems of these people.

Laos

Author: A. Schapiro
Title: Adjustment and Identity Formation of Lao Refugee Adolescents
Journal Name: Smith College Studies in Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 58, Number 3
Date: June 1988
Pages: 157-81
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: An exploratory study was undertaken to ascertain how Laotian refugee adolescents are adjusting to life in the U.S., with particular focus on areas that impact identity formation. Potential problem areas examined were family relationships, school functioning, social status and acceptance, peer relationships, and future planning. The primary stressor encountered by the subjects on their arrival in the U.S. was racial prejudice; other significant factors included academic and language deficits, conflicts with parents, difficulty finding an appropriate peer group, and problems adjusting to lowered social and economic status. All but 3 subjects appeared to be functioning well, although 9 showed signs of depression. Outreach to this group by culturally sensitive and compassionate social workers is warranted.

Afghanistan

Author: Juliene G. Lipson
Title: Afghan Refugees in California: Mental Health Issues
Journal Name: Issues in Mental Health Nursing
Volume, Issue: Volume 14, Number 4
Date: 1993
Page: 411
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable



Central and South America

Central and South America (general)

Author: C. J. Gonsalves
Title: The Psychological Effects of Political Repression on Chilean Exiles in the U.S.
Journal Name: American Journal of Orthopsychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 60, Number 1
Date: January 1990
Pages: 143-53
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Interviews with 32 Chilean refugees elicited descriptive findings on the effects of detention and torture and subsequent exile in the U.S. The findings suggest that exile for this group constitututes a continuation, rather than a cessation, of their suffering. Anticipatory guidance designed to prepare families for the hardships of exile, outreach programs for children and their parents, and support systems for single people are recommended as solutions to some of the difficulties experienced by the subjects.

Author: D. S. Masser
Title: Psychosocial Funcitioning of Central American Refugee Children
Journal Name: Child Welfare
Volume, Issue: Volume 71, Number 5
Date: September/October 1992
Pages: 439-56
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: In a qualitative study of the functioning of Central American refugee children in Los Angeles, special attention was given to two questions: what factors in a child's history appear to be the most significant? And what symptoms do these children typically manifest? Findings indicate that a combination of variables such as witnessing war violence and long separation from a primary caregiver was significant for the development of posttraumatic stress disorder.

Guatemala/Nicaragua/El Salvador

Title: The State Construction of Affect: Political Ethos and Mental Health Among Salvadoran Refugees
Journal Name: Culture, Medicine, and Psychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 15, Number 2
Date: June 1991
Pages: 139-67
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Author: G. Urrutia
Title: Mental Health Problems of Encamped Refugees: Guatemalan Refugees in Mexican Camps, 1978-1984
Journal Name: Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic
Volume, Issue: Volume 51, Number 2
Date: March 1987
Pages: 170-85
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Cuba/Haiti:

Author: Lance G. Emerson
Title: Applied Anthropology and The Marielitos: A Cultural-Specific Private Prison Program
Journal Name: High Plains Anthropologist
Volume, Issue: Volume 14, Number 1
Date: Spring 1994
Pages: 87-103
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: Unavailable

Authors: Alejandro Portes, David Kyle, and William W. Eaton
Title: Mental Illness and Help-Seeking Behavior Among Mariel Cuban and Haitian Refugees in South Florida
Journal Name: Journal of Health and Social Behavior
Volume, Issue: Volume 33, Number 4
Date: December 1992
Pages: 283-98
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Unavailable

Puerto Rico:

Author: S. M. Berthold
Title: Spiritism as a Form of Psychotherapy: Implications for Social Work Practice
Journal Name: Social Casework: The Journal of Contemporary Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 70, Number 8
Date: October 1989
Pages: 502-9
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: There are two main spiritist traditions among Puerto Ricans: Mesa Blanca, which originated in Europe and is based on a belief in reincarnation, and Santeria, a synthesis of an African religion and Catholicism that centers on the worship of saints. Many Puerto Ricans practice a blend of these two traditions. Puerto Rican spiritists believe in a spirit world and in the duality of matter and spirit. Spirits can attach themselves to human beings and exert a profound influence on human affairs either by helping or causing harm. Some people possess special abilities to communicate with and control the spirits; centros, or spiritual churches, exist where these spiritually strong individuals can help others. Approximately one-third of all adult Puerto Ricans with mental disorders consult spiritists rather than seeking psychiatric treatment. A discussion examines the Puerto Rican practice of spiritism as a form of psychotherapy so that therapists who work with clients who believe in spiritism can be more aware of their clients" belief systems. Suggestions are made for social workers and others who work with these clients.

Special Populations

Special Populations

Children:

Authors: M. Ajdukovic and D. Ajdukovic
Title: Psychological Well-Being of Refugee Children
Journal Name: Child Abuse and Neglect
Volume, Issue: Volume 17, Number 6
Date: November/December 1993
Pages: 843-54
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: Two groups of refugee families participated in a program aimed at preventing children's mental health problems. The program attempted to gain insight into the character and scope of problems of refugee families and to develop and implement a spectrum of interventions that would meet their specific psychological needs. Data about the family situation and the psychosocial adaptation of refugee children to displacement was gathered during detailed structured interviews with the mothers, while the study families were accomodated either in a shelter or with host families. A considerable range of stress-related reactions among displaced children were identified. Refugee children exhibited a significantly higher incidence of stress reactions if their mothers had difficulty coping with stress of displacement. The findings also indicated that children in the collective shelter were at greater mental health risk than their peers housed with host families.

Author: D. S. Masser
Title: Psychosocial Functioning of Central American Refugee Children
Journal Name: Child Welfare
Volume, Issue: Volume 71, Number 5
Date: September/October 1992
Pages: 439-56
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: In a qualitative study of the functioning of Central American refugee children in Los Angeles, special attention was given to two questions: what factors in a child's history appear to be the most significant? And what symptoms do these children typically manifest? Findings indicate that a combination of variables such as witnessing war violence and long separation from a primary caregiver was significant for the development of posttraumatic stress disorder.

Authors: Z. Porte and J. Torney-Purta
Title: Depression and Academic Achievement Among Indochinese Refugee Unaccompanied Minors in Ethnic and Non-Ethnic Placements
Journal Name: American Journal of Orthopsychiatry
Volume, Issue: Volume 57, Number 4
Date: October 1987
Pages: 536-47
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: A study examined the effects of critical elements in the past and present life experiences of Indochinese minors on their adaptation to the U.S. Of particular concern was whether life satisfaction and depression, the balance of American versus ethnic identity, and academic achievement could be predicted on the basis of placement mode (Caucasian or ethnic foster care, group home, or own family). The refugee adolescents who were resettled with ethnic foster families were significantly less depressed and had higher grade-point-averages than those in foster care with Caucasian families or in group homes. The ongoing presence of an adult of similar ethnicity to the adolescent appeared to mitigate against the stress of adaptation to a new country.

Author: A. Schapiro
Title: Adjustment and Identity Formation of Lao Refugee Adolescents
Journal Name: Smith College Studies in Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 58, Number 3
Date: June 1988
Pages: 157-81
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: An exploratory study was undertaken to ascertain how Laotian refugee adolescents are adjusting to life in the U.S., with particular focus on areas that impact identity formation. Potential problem areas examined were family relationships, school functioning, social status and acceptance, peer relationships, and future planning. The primary stressor encountered by the subjects on their arrival in the U.S. was racial prejudice; other significant factors included academic and language deficits, conflicts with parents, difficulty finding an appropriate peer group, and problems adjusting to lowered social and economic status. All but 3 subjects appeared to be functioning well, although 9 showed signs of depression. Outreach to this group by culturally sensitive and compassionate social workers is warranted.



Women:

Authors: E. Cole, E. D. Rothblum, and O. M. Espin
Title: Refugee Women and Their Mental Health: Shattered Societies, Shattered Lives; Parts I and II
Journal Name: Women and Therapy
Volume, Issue: Volume 13, Numbers 1, 2 and 3
Date: 1993
Pages: Unavailable
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: This special issue focuses on understanding the plight of women refugees throughout the world, befor and after resettlement. Also included is a section on the challenges and rewards of working with refugee women. Volume 13, Number 3 moves from theory to practice; it explores processes of recovery from the traumas experienced by refugee women and offers a variety of models for the application of feminist theory.

Authors: R. H. Nishimoto, K. L. Chau, and R. W. Roberts
Title: The Psychological Status of Vietnamese Chinese Women in Refugee Camps
Journal Name: Journal of Women and Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 4, Number 3
Date: Fall 1989
Pages: 51-64
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: The psychological resources that refugee women bring to bear in refugee camps are important predictors of their and their families" eventual adaptation to their country of final settlement. Reported on is a study of the psychological status of 59 Vietnamese Chinese women in refugee camps in Hong Kong who were awaiting permanent resettlement. The study also examined factors that affected the mental health of these refugees such as the women's report of stressful life events, the availability of social supports, and various aspects of their experience in the refugee camps. Implications for social work services and social policy are presented.

Author: Carrington U. Nguyen
Title: Counseling Indochinese Refugee Women Rape Survivors
Journal Name: Administration in Social Work
Volume, Issue: Volume 45, Number 3
Date: September 1992
Pages: 19-25
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: No
Abstract: This study is based on the author's experience as a counselor of rape survivors and traumatized refugees at two refugee camps in Malaysia. Analysis of the work revealed a particular mental dissonance in the women which resulted from the clash between their culture and new self-concepts necessary for their recovery. It was demonstrated that counseling methods that emphasize self-esteem, personal values, and self-sufficiency are necessary for the recovery of traumatized people in host countries such as Australia and Canada. Information on clients" psychological and social issues and needs can increase the awareness of support groups regarding this matter. Establishment and training of these women's groups, composed of volunteers having the same cultural background as the clients, will facilitate the survivors" access to professional services.

Author: Rachel Rodriguez
Title: Forgotten Pain: Migrant Farmworker Women and Domestic Violence
Journal Name: Boulder County Safehouse Newsletter
Volume, Issue: Unavailable
Date: Summer 1996
Page: 1
Hard Copy at CRIIC Library: Yes
Abstract: Unavailable

Other Abstracts

Abstracts

Cultural Transitions in First-Generation Immigrants: Acculturation of Soviet Jewish Refugee Adolescents and Parents
Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, July 2001, vol. 32, no. 4, pp. 456-477(22)
Birman D.[1]; Trickett E.J.[2]
[1] Georgetown University Medical Center [2] University of Maryland
Abstract:
This article focuses on the process of acculturation for first-generation Soviet Jewish refugee adolescents and their parents who have resettled in the United States. First, the extent of acculturation to the new and the old culture is assessed independently. Second, acculturation is assessed multidimensionally, including the constructs of language competence, behavioral acculturation, and cultural identity. Third, the extent to which life stage differences at immigration affect the acculturation process is assessed. Overall, the data suggest that acculturation appears to occur in a linear pattern over time for most dimensions of acculturation, with acculturation to the American culture increasing and acculturation to the Russian culture decreasing. However, Russian language competence for the parents did not diminish with length of residence in the country. Furthermore, an unexpected acculturative gap was observed between parents and children with respect to Russian identity, with adolescents being more identified with the Russian culture than their parents

 "Onward through Strength": Coping and Psychological Support among Refugee Youth Returning to Eritrea from Sudan
Journal of Refugee Studies, 1 March 2001, vol. 14, no. 1, pp. 43-69(27)
Farwell N.[1]
[1]School of Social Work, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
Abstract:
The experience of Eritrean young people in dealing with war-related traumatic events is a complex phenomenon, as indicated in this qualitative study of refugee youth returning to their homeland from exile in Sudan. The youth described a wide range of responses to war-related events, and utilized a variety of types and levels of coping responses. Themes that emerge from these responses include inner strength, separation and loss, community solidarity, concerns about subsistence, the importance of education, and the desire for a peaceful future. Families, elders, community solidarity, and combatants constituted important sources of psychological support. Based on the youths' coping resources and their own recommendations, interventions are proposed to provide psychosocial support to young people during reintegration. Intervention areas include guidance and support, organized youth activities, continuity of education, and mentored economic development and community-building activities. Programme recommendations, while emanating from the Eritrean context, can be modified to fit specific circumstances of returning refugees in other developing countries emerging from war.

Popular media as public sphericules' for diasporic communities
International Journal of Cultural Studies, June 2001, vol. 4, no. 2, pp. 131-147(17)
Cunningham S.[1]
[1] Queensland University of Technology
Abstract:
The dynamics of 'diasporic' video, television, cinema, music and Internet use - where peoples displaced from homelands by migration, refugee status or business and economic imperative use media to negotiate new cultural identities - offer challenges for how media and culture are understood in our times. Drawing on research published in Floating Lives: The Media and Asian Diasporas, on dynamics that are industrial (the pathways by which these media travel to their multifarious destinations), textual and audience-related (types of diasporic style and practice where popular culture debates and moral panics are played out in culturally divergent circumstances among communities marked by internal difference and external 'othering'), the article will interrogate further the nature of the public sphericules' formed around diasporic media 

Refugee families in therapy: from referrals to therapeutic conversations
Journal of Family Therapy, May 2001, vol. 23, no. 2, pp. 119-135(17)
Sveaass N. [1]; Reichelt S. [2]
[1] Psychosocial Centre for Refugees, 0864 Oslo, Norway [2] Institute of Psychology, University of Oslo, Norway
Abstract:
Refugee families referred for therapy present a wide array of problems and expectations, not always in accordance with what therapy may offer. Major differences between referring professionals, families and therapists regarding problem definitions and solutions may complicate collaboration. Interventions that may overcome these barriers and move initial interviews into a therapeutic context are described. Three patterns regarding referral process, problem presentation and expectations (here called referral contexts) are outlined: "the relational", where families ask for psychological and interpersonal assistance, "the unfocused", where families are referred to therapy without expressing any wish for it, and "the fixed solution", where families seek support for solutions that are not of a therapeutic nature. The interventions described form part of a negotiation where motives and interest for therapy are explored and agreements regarding further therapy are outlined.

Traumatic experience and sleep disturbance in refugee children from the Middle East
European Journal of Public Health, March 2001, vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 18-22(5)
Montgomery E.[1][3]; Foldspang A.[2]
E-mail: Edith_Montgomery@rct.dk Tel: +45 33 760600 Fax: +45 33 760500 [1]Rehabilitation and Research Centre for Torture Victims (RCT), Borgergade 13, PO Box 2107, DK-1014 Copenhagen K, Denmark [2]Department of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark [3]Corresponding author
Abstract:
Background. Sleep disturbance is frequently reported in children after traumatic experiences associated with organised violence. The aim of this study was to identify specific traumatic risk indicators and modifying factors for sleep disturbance among recently arrived refugee children from the Middle East.
Method. The study group comprises 311, 3-15 year old refugee children from the Middle East. On arrival in Denmark, their parents participated in a structured interview about their childrens' health and history of exile and eventual exposure to war, organised violence and human right violation.
Results. A family history of violence (grandparent's violent death before the birth of the child or parental exposure to torture) as well as a stressful present family situation (father scolds the child more than previously) were the strongest predictors of prevalent sleep disturbance in the children. Arriving in Denmark with both parents rather than one was a modifying factor, so the effect of traumatic experience on sleep patterns later in childhood was mediated through parental presence and behaviour.
Conclusion. This study indicates that the family environment is of primary importance for childhood sleep disturbance following traumatic experiences connected with war and other organised violence.

Emerging paradigms in the mental health care of refugees
Social Science and Medicine, June 2001, vol. 52, no. 11, pp. 1709-1718(10)
Watters C.[1]
[1]European Center for the Study of the Social Care of Minority Groups and Refugees, University of Kent at Canterbury, Canterbury, CT2 7LZ, Kent, UK
Abstract:
Over the past decade the approaches adopted towards the mental health care of refugees by a range of national and international healthcare organisations have been the subject of a sustained and growing critique. Much of this critique has focused on the way in which Western psychiatric categories have been ascribed to refugee populations in ways which, critics argue, pay scant attention to the social, political and economic factors that play a pivotal role in refugees' experience. Rather than portraying refugees as ''passive victims'' suffering mental health problems, critics have argued that attention should be given to the resistance of refugees and the ways in which they interpret and respond to experiences, challenging the external forces bearing upon them. In this paper a range of issues concerning the mental health care of refugees will be examined. These include the role of psychiatric diagnosis in relation to refugees' own perceptions of their need and within the context of general health and social care provision. In examining services the emergence of new paradigms in mental health care is identified. These include the growth of holistic approaches that take account of refugees' own experiences and expressed needs and which address the broader social policy contexts in which refugees are placed. A three-dimensional model for the analysis of the interrelationship between ''macro'' level institutional factors in the mental health of refugees and the individual treatment of refugees within mental health services is proposed.
 

Multiculturalism and Social Integration in Europe
International Political Science Review/ Revue internationale de science politique, January 2001, vol. 22, no. 1, pp. 55-84(30)
Dijkstra S.[1]; Geuijen K.; de Ruijter A.[2]

[1] Utrecht University [2] CERES
Abstract:
In an era of increasing cultural diversity within nation-sates and the deterritorialization of cultures and peoples, the notion of a national citizenship signifying a single, homogenized culture shared by all citizens has become obsolete. A possible alternative is presented in which an uncoupling of nationality and culture would lead to open and equal communication between citizens and the development of transmigrants' identities as members of a transnational and multicultural global society who may have ties with two or more nation-states.

MENTAL HEALTH STATUS IN REFUGEES: AN INTEGRATIVE REVIEW OF CURRENT RESEARCH
Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 1 June 2000, vol. 21, no. 4, pp. 397-410(14)
Keyes E. F.
Abstract:
The purpose of this integrative review was to assess the results of current published quantitative research about refugees and their mental health status. An extensive literature review using several approaches was performed. A group of 12 articles met inclusion criteria for this study sample (N = 12). All 12 studies showed negative mental health status in the refugees sampled. Mental health outcomes included posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety, psychosis, and dissociation. This review revealed a lack of culturally sensitive understandings and diagnostic measures in the majority of current published quantitative research on refugees. The scope of this research for health professionals is broad, as the number of refugees continues to rise. Recommendations for clinicians include an expanded range of practice to incorporate refugee-specific assessment and treatment. 

Effects of Posttraumatic Stress and Acculturation on Marital Functioning in Bosnian Refugee Couples
Journal of Traumatic Stress, April 2000, vol. 13, no. 2, pp. 205-217(13)
Spasojevi J.[1]; Heffer R.W.[1]; Snyder D.K.[1]
[1]Department of Psychology, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas 77843-4235
Abstract:
Forty Bosnian refugee couples living in the United States completed a translated version of the PTSD Symptom Scale'self Report, the Behavioral Acculturation Scale, the Marital Satisfaction Inventory"Revised, and a demographic questionnaire. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptomatology was the best predictor of marital functioning and was related negatively to acculturation. After controlling for PTSD, acculturation did not predict marital functioning. Wives' marital satisfaction was best predicted by husbands' PTSD, husbands' acculturation, and their own PTSD. Husbands' marital satisfaction was not predicted significantly by any of these variables. These findings suggest several implications for mental health professionals dealing with refugees and other traumatized populations.

Refugee Families' Experience of Research Participation
Journal of Traumatic Stress, July 2000, vol. 13, no. 3, pp. 413-426(14)
Dyregrov K.[1]; Dyregrov A.[2]; Raundalen M.[2]
[1]Center for Crisis Psychology, Fabrikkgt. 5, 5059 Bergen, Norway; kdyregro@online.no. [2]Center for Crisis Psychology, Fabrikkgt. 5, 5059 Bergen, Norway
Abstract:
Because refugees can experience crisis, bereavement, and traumatization, there has been a rapid increase of research carried out with refugees. This study investigated how refugee families respond to participation in research. A previous study explored how adults and children had communicated about the difficult question of repatriation after arriving in a new country. Did the in-depth interviews harm or benefit them? Are there any ethical risks in research on traumatized refugees? From an original sample of 74 Bosnian refugees (5"73 years), 30 family members from 9 families including 14 children aged 6 to 19, were re-interviewed. The refugees rated participation as positive. A few parents lacked information that could have enabled them to inform the children better before the interviews. The study shows that studies on traumatized/bereaved populations can have beneficial effects

 Promoting the Psychological Well-being of Refugee Children
Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry, October 2000, vol. 5, no. 4, pp. 541-554(14)
Davies M.[1]; Webb E.[2]
[1] Preswylfa Child and Family Centre, UK [2] University of Wales College of Medicine, UK
Abstract:
Meeting the mental health needs of Somali refugee children in Wales creates significant difficulties for service provision. Some case examples are provided. The children's needs, the services received and the plight of refugee children are discussed in the context of the following key areas: (i) the child (aspects of development); (ii) the referred problem; (iii) the war/refugee context; (iv) Somali culture; and (v) the host culture. Developmental factors relating to the vulnerability of refugee boys in the host culture are identified. Based on their experiences and with the benefit of recent literature, the authors recommend a coordinated and culturally sensitive approach to the care of refugee children and their families.  

Refugee Experiences and Southeast Asian Women's Mental Health
Western Journal of Nursing Research, March 2000, vol. 22, no. 2, pp. 144-168(25)
Davis R.E.[1]
[1] Millersville University
Abstract:
The wars in Southeast Asia displaced thousands of families from Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam. The upheavals led to a number of waves of immigration to the United States. Current research supports hypotheses of post-traumatic stress disorder diagnoses in refugees from the wars in Vietnam but omits pertinent cultural factors. This phenomenological study of 19 women from Southeast Asia examines the meanings of their refugee experiences. Open-ended interviews with these women reveal themes of survival, despair, and isolation. Health care providers may notice cultural bereavement as opposed to post-traumatic stress disorder, reflecting a psychological resilience not extensively explored previously. Developing empathetic interactions and including important ethnic identity factors in caring for refugee women appear essential in providing appropriate health care

Organized violence and mental health of refugee children in exile: a six-year follow-up
Acta Paediatrica, 7 June 2000, vol. 89, no. 6, pp. 722-727(6)
Hjern A.[1]; Angel B.
[1] Centre for Epidemiology, Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare, SE-106 30 Stockholm, Sweden
Abstract:
In an earlier study we described a high rate of poor mental health in 63 refugee children from Chile and the Middle East during the first 18 mo of exile. In this follow-up study the mental health of 49 of these children is described in parent, teacher and child interviews 6-7 y after settlement in Sweden. The level of poor mental health in parent interviews has improved from 47% 18 mo after settlement to 22% (p < 0.01 in paired t-test) at follow-up. Conclusions: Eighteen percent of 34 children still in primary school were judged by their teachers to show deviant behaviour in the classroom. Three children were found to suffer from either re-experience or avoidance of painful memories, whereas only one neurologically impaired child fulfilled the criteria of PTSD according to DSM-IV. Recent stress in the family sphere and exposure to acts of organized violence in the country of origin are identified as the major determinants of poor mental health.

Website Links

Other Websites Related to Mental Health

A. ATMHN: THE AUSTRALIAN TRANSCULTURAL MENTAL HEALTH NETWORK
(http://ariel.its.unimelb.edu.au/~atmhn/)
This address provides information on research, professional development, community education, and network membership. It also contains Australian state and national policy documents relating to the field in full text.

B. WORLD FEDERATION FOR MENTAL HEALTH
(http://www.wfmh.org/)
Of particular interest at this location are three collaborative centers dealing directly with refugee mental health: the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma, the IPSER Institute, and STARTTS for Torture and Trauma.

 

Home | History | Abstracts | Mental HealthRefugee Services | Humanitarian Briefs | Africa Papers
University of Denver | Josef Korbel School of International Studies

© 2015 University of Denver. All Rights Reserved. Privacy. The University of Denver is an equal opportunity affirmative action institution.

edit page button