Document Detail

Refugees' perspectives on barriers to communication about trauma histories in primary care.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23277798     Owner:  NLM     Status:  PubMed-not-MEDLINE    
Objective This study explores refugees' perspectives regarding the nature of communication barriers that impede the exploration of trauma histories in primary care.Method Brief interviews were conducted with 53 refugee patients in a suburban primary care clinic in the Midwest USA. Participants were asked if they or their doctors had initiated conversations about the impact of political conflict in their home countries. Qualitative data analysis was guided by grounded theory. Peer debriefings of refugee healthcare professionals were incorporated into the analysis.Results Two-thirds of refugee patients reported that they never shared how they were affected by political conflict with their doctors and that their doctors never asked them about it. Most refugees stated that they would like to learn more about the impact of trauma on their health and to discuss their experiences with their doctors.Conclusion Refugees are hesitant to initiate conversations with physicians due to cultural norms requiring deference to the doctor's authority. They also lack knowledge about how trauma affects health. Physicians should be educated to inquire directly about trauma histories with refugee patients. Refugees can benefit from education about the effects of trauma on health and about the collaborative nature of the doctor-patient relationship.
Patricia Shannon; Maureen O'Dougherty; Erin Mehta
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Mental health in family medicine     Volume:  9     ISSN:  1756-834X     ISO Abbreviation:  Ment Health Fam Med     Publication Date:  2012 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2013-01-01     Completed Date:  2013-01-02     Revised Date:  2013-05-30    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101474665     Medline TA:  Ment Health Fam Med     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  47-55     Citation Subset:  -    
Research Associate, Center for Victims of Torture, Minneapolis, USA and School of Social Work.
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