Compassionate care provision : an immense need during the refugee crisis : lessons learned from a European capacity-building project

Background:

The refugee crisis has resulted in massive waves of migration towards Europe. Besides sufficient and appropriate healthcare services, these vulnerable populations need kindness, respect, acceptance, empathy, and attention to basic needs. Healthcare professionals ought to have a respectful and compassionate approach to safeguard the dignity and interests of the people they care for.

 

Aim:

Factors associated with common mental health problems of humanitarian workers in South Sudan

 

Background

The latest data on major attacks against civilian aid operations have identified South Sudan as the most dangerous country for aid workers globally. Exposure to other traumatic events and chronic stress is also common in this population. No research exists on the mental health of humanitarian workers in South Sudan.

 

 

Objectives

Towards an Afghan counselling psychology : A partnership to integrate psychological counselling into the university curriculum at Afghanistan’s flagship public universities

Developing sustainable efforts to address the psychosocial consequences of complex emergencies is often a challenge. There is a limit to what humanitarian efforts can achieve, even with the best of intentions. Locally based tertiary education programmes are needed to provide conceptual frameworks and to develop and sustain professional psychosocial support programmes both during and after the emergency.

Value-based counselling : Reflections on fourteen years of psychosocial support in Afghanistan

The psychosocial and mental health support system in Afghanistan has evolved significantly over the last decades. Inge Missmahl, founder and director of the International Psychosocial Organisation gGmbH traces the history of the sector over the last fourteen years and reflects on working towards the long-term integration of biopsychosocial mental health care in the Afghan Public Health System. Health system integration was accomplished through development and training delivery of a value-based counselling approach.

Studying the effectiveness of motivational group therapy in heroin addicts in Kabul

Afghanistan has one of the highest rates of substance use in the world, yet existing treatment focuses on detoxification, residential rehabilitation and with very low intensity aftercare. Current available treatment should be changed to more evidence-based modalities, such as structured psychosocial interventions. In addition, the main role of affect in development, maintenance and abstinence of substance use disorders should be also taken into account.

The efficacy of memory specificity training in improving symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder in bereaved Afghan adolescents

The main objective of this study was to study the effectiveness of memory specificity training (MEST) on the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) of bereaved Afghan adolescents. Participants were bereaved Afghan adolescents with PTSD and depressive symptomatology and were randomly assigned into the MEST, trauma-focused cognitive behavioural therapy (TF-CBT) and a control group. In this study, a quasi-experimental design with pretest–post-test and follow-up with experimental and control groups was used.

Developing a culturally relevant counselling psychology degree programme in Afghanistan : Results from a DACUM study

This paper reports on the results of a research study that was conducted by the members of the Departments of Counselling at Kabul University and Herat University in collaboration with their international advisors. The purpose of the study was to determine how Afghans practicing counselling psychology or wishing to employ professional psychological counsellors understand and operationalize the knowledge, skills and values required to be a professional counsellor in Afghanistan.

Participatory lived experience research : Barriers and enablers for social inclusion for people with psychosocial disability, in Afghanistan?

 

Mental health disorders are common in low and middle-income countries (LMICs), creating vulnerability to adverse outcomes. Despite this, there is a gap in understanding the perspectives of people with psychosocial disability (PPSD). A mental health project from Afghanistan collected lived experience narratives through semi-structured interviews with PPSD and family members. 

Examining help-seeking patterns within modern and traditional resources for support in Afghanistan

Little is known about who and what Afghans turn to cope with mental distress precipitated by ongoing socio-political and economic problems. In a cross-sectional survey, the authors examined help-seeking behaviour for mental distress in 306 Afghans residing in Kabul, Afghanistan, and how their choice of what to access for help is influenced by various social and mental healthrelated factors. Factors predicting the use of six distinct resources for support were examined, including biomedical and behavioural health and community-based resources.

Mental disorder or emotional distress? : How psychiatric surveys in Afghanistan ignore the role of gender, culture and context

Over the last decades, mental health surveys in Afghanistan found very high prevalence figures for mental health problems among the Afghans. These epidemiological data suggest that the majority of the Afghan population suffer from a mental disorder such as depression or post-traumatic stress disorder. Such findings are often met with surprise by the Afghans who doubt that most of the people around them would suffer from a psychiatric illness.

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