Preprint Review Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

A Systematic Review of the Protective and Risk Factors Influencing the Mental Health of Forced Migrants: Implications for Sustainable Intercultural Mental Health Practice

Version 1 : Received: 26 April 2021 / Approved: 27 April 2021 / Online: 27 April 2021 (14:24:31 CEST)

How to cite: Farahani, H.; Joubert, N.; Anand, J.C.; Toikko, T.; Tavakol, M. A Systematic Review of the Protective and Risk Factors Influencing the Mental Health of Forced Migrants: Implications for Sustainable Intercultural Mental Health Practice. Preprints 2021, 2021040726 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202104.0726.v1). Farahani, H.; Joubert, N.; Anand, J.C.; Toikko, T.; Tavakol, M. A Systematic Review of the Protective and Risk Factors Influencing the Mental Health of Forced Migrants: Implications for Sustainable Intercultural Mental Health Practice. Preprints 2021, 2021040726 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202104.0726.v1).

Abstract

This systematic review followed the guidelines of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA) statement to synthesizes the existing literature with a goal to review current conceptual frameworks of mental health of forced migrants for further practice research priorities in social work. The search was done between January 2015 to January 2021. As a result, 29 studies met inclusion criteria. Medicalizing mental health issues by relying solely on the effectiveness of medicine was a controversial risk factor that negatively affected the daily life activities of refugees and reduced their willingness for seeking professional mental health services. Empowering vulnerable minorities by giving them back their power and agency to be able to speak for themselves and raise voices of trauma and recovery was the missing protective factor for sustainable mental health practice. The benefits of group-based interventions are highlighted in which communities and individuals address mental health issues as well as isolation through building collective identities and support networks. Information and communication technologies (ICTs) can add more strength to any kind of mental health intervention. Finally, the benefits of applying ecological perspective for the mental health of refugees, and its implications for a sustainable intercultural practice are discussed. Social workers in this model are the representatives of at-risk groups, thus need more agency and creativity in reflecting client’s concrete needs.

Subject Areas

mental health; risk factor; protective factor; refugee; asylum-seeker; sustainable intervention

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