A systematic review of psychosocial interventions for adult refugees and asylum seekers

Added November 28, 2017

Citation: Tribe R.H., Sendt K.V., Tracy D.K. A systematic review of psychosocial interventions for adult refugees and asylum seekers. Journal of Mental Health. 2017;8:1-5.

Forty articles were included to assess psychosocial interventions for refugee populations experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depressive, or anxiety symptoms. Evidence was strongest in support of narrative exposure therapy (NET), though the lack of culturally adapted treatments was noted.

Searches were conducted in PubMed, PsycINFO, PILOTS, and Social Services Abstracts to identify current literature on psychosocial interventions for refugee populations. The identified psychosocial interventions were both trauma- and non-trauma-focused. The review found medium to high quality evidence supporting the use of NET, with positive outcomes in refugees from diverse backgrounds and trauma types. There was relatively less evidence to support standard cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) and multidisciplinary treatments. However, further evidence is required to substantiate all of the intervention types.

 

Disclaimer: This summary has been written by staff and volunteers of Evidence Aid in order to make the content of the original document accessible to decision makers who are searching for the available evidence on the health of refugees and asylum seekers but may not have the time, initially, to read the original report in full. This summary is not intended as a substitute for the medical advice of physicians, other health workers, professional associations, guideline developers, or national governments and international agencies. If readers of this summary think that the evidence that is presented within it is relevant to their decision-making they should refer to the content and details of the original article, and the advice and guidelines offered by other sources of expertise, before making decisions. Evidence Aid cannot be held responsible for any decisions made about the health of refugees and asylum seekers on the basis of this summary alone.

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