This paper reports findings from a qualitative study of the mental health needs of refugees, asylum seekers and migrant workers living in an East Anglian seaside town with high rates of socio‐economic deprivation. Nine key informants were recruited from people working with refugees, asylum seekers and migrant workers, and from people who were either members of, or had extensive knowledge of the issues affecting the relevant communities. Barriers were reported both at the stage of seeking services and in accessing services once sought. Barriers to seeking services included different understandings of mental health problems, lack of acknowledgement, discussion and prioritisation of mental health problems, stigma, lack of knowledge of services, fear of authority and lack of trust. Barriers to access included previous negative experiences of accessing NHS services, resource limitations, lack of interpreting and translation services, and practical barriers such as transport and hours of appointments. The findings are discussed in relation to mental health service delivery and mental health promotion.
Journal of Public Mental Health – Emerald Publishing
Published: Mar 1, 2007
Keywords: Barriers; Black and minority ethnic groups; Mental health promotion; Community psychology; Qualitative research