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Psychological Health

Anxiety Big Problem Among Refugees

Published fredag 15 oktober 2010 kl 09.57

A new study shows that psychological problems in refugees coming to Sweden often go undiagnosed by Swedish authorities. And those psychological problems can lead to physical health issues down the line, say researchers.

Refugees who arrive in Sweden are given a routine health evaluation by The National Board of Health and Welfare. It includes a 30-minute interview which is often conducted through an interpreter. But the interview often isn't enough to uncover afflictions like severe anxiety, depression, or post traumatic stress disorder. More than 50 percent of those interviewed had considerable anxiety, the study claims.

Swedish Radio News reported that a woman from Iraq whose brother was murdered and whose father died complained about her interview by a nurse when she came to Sweden saying it made her feel sad. Solveig Ekblad, the lead researcher on the study which was conducted by Karolinska Institutet, said interviews should be longer and interviewers should have more knowledge about problems in the refugee's homeland and about psychological disorders in general.

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