‘Only God can promise healing.’: help-seeking intentions and lay beliefs about cures for post-traumatic stress disorder among Sub-Saharan African asylum seekers in Germany - Université Paris Nanterre Access content directly
Journal Articles European Journal of Psychotraumatology Year : 2019

‘Only God can promise healing.’: help-seeking intentions and lay beliefs about cures for post-traumatic stress disorder among Sub-Saharan African asylum seekers in Germany

Abstract

Background: Epidemiological studies have reported high rates of post-traumatic stressdisorder (PTSD) among asylum seekers from Sub-Saharan Africa. In order to provide appro-priate and culturally sensitive mental health care for this group, further knowledge abouttreatment preferences might be necessary.Objective: We aimed to provide insights into help-seeking intentions and lay beliefs aboutcures for PTSD held by asylum seekers from Sub-Saharan Africa living in Germany.Methods: To address this objective, we used a quantitative and qualitative methodologicaltriangulation strategy based on a vignette describing symptoms of PTSD. In the quantitativepart of the study, asylum seekers (n = 119), predominantly from Eritrea (n = 41), Somalia(n = 36), and Cameroon (n = 25), and a German comparison sample without a migrationbackground (n = 120) completed the General Help-Seeking Questionnaire (GHSQ). In thequalitative part, asylum seekers (n = 26) reviewed the results of the questionnaire surveywithin eight focus group discussions sampled from groups of the three main countries oforigin.Results: Asylum seekers showed a high intention to seek religious, medical, and psycholo-gical treatment for symptoms of PTSD. However, asylum seekers indicated a higher pre-ference to seek help from religious authorities and general practitioners, as well as a lowerpreference to enlist psychological and traditional help sources than Germans withouta migration background. Furthermore, asylum seekers addressed structural and culturalbarriers to seeking medical and psychological treatment.Conclusion: To facilitate access to local health care systems for asylum seekers and refugees,it might be crucial to develop public health campaigns in collaboration with religiouscommunities. When treating asylum seekers and refugees from Sub-Saharan Africa, practi-tioners should explore different religious and cultural frameworks for healing and recoveryin order to signal understanding and acceptance of varying cultural contexts.

Dates and versions

hal-04199950 , version 1 (08-09-2023)

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Freyja Grupp, Marie Rose Moro, Urs Nater, Sara Skandrani, Ricarda Mewes. ‘Only God can promise healing.’: help-seeking intentions and lay beliefs about cures for post-traumatic stress disorder among Sub-Saharan African asylum seekers in Germany. European Journal of Psychotraumatology , 2019, 10 (1), ⟨10.1080/20008198.2019.1684225⟩. ⟨hal-04199950⟩
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