Giving Compass’ Take:
• Mike Tomson discusses how refugees’ poor mental health reduced their ability to manage their chronic illnesses, leading to unfavorable outcomes.
• Mental health care may not make top priorities for refugee funders, how can the importance of this issue known?
• Learn more about the importance of mental health care.
Though depression and anxiety are chronic diseases in their own right, this is not reason on its own for patients with these conditions to be able to join the project for treatment. But mental health or psychosocial care has been in the project for quite a while.
Not long before I arrived the decision had been made that we would start to screen people for depression using a questionnaire that is commonly used in UK (the PHQ9).
I wonder as I’ve been thinking about our mental health work whether I’ve missed out the elephant in the room?
The question that is hidden, but we need to think about, is whether we should be offering mental health counselling, independent of other chronic illnesses, in our programme?
There is good evidence that those who are depressed do less well in managing their heart disease and live for shorter times after a heart attack, and that depressed people have worse results when we look at their diabetes.
The evidence on how much impact we can make in general populations on improving the physical outcomes with mental health inputs is slightly less clear, with results showing benefits and some showing no change.
Read the full article on mental health in Jordan by Mike Tomson at Doctors Without Borders.
If you are looking for more articles and resources for Immigrant Refugee, take a look at these Giving Compass selections related to impact giving and Immigrant Refugee.
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