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Occurrence and correlates of depressive symptoms among the resettled Afghan refugees in a regional area of Australia

Hamrah, MS ORCID: 0000-0003-1758-8341, Hoang, H ORCID: 0000-0001-5116-9947, Mond, J ORCID: 0000-0002-0410-091X, Pahlavanzade, B, Charkazi, A and Auckland, S ORCID: 0000-0001-7972-0227 2020 , 'Occurrence and correlates of depressive symptoms among the resettled Afghan refugees in a regional area of Australia' , Early intervention in psychiatry , pp. 1-8 , doi:

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Aims: Refugees and asylum seekers are at high risk of mental health problems suchas post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression. Elucidating the occurrenceand correlates of these problems in specific resettled refugee populations may behelpful in informing tailored prevention and health promotion programs. We soughtto elucidate the occurrence and correlates of depressive symptoms among Afghanrefugees resettled in Launceston, a regional town of Australia.Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional survey of 66 resettled Afghan refugeesresiding in Launceston in April 2019. We used the Hopkins symptoms checklist(HSCL-25) and the post migration living difficulties scale (PMLD) to measure depression symptoms and post-migration variables, respectively. Demographic characteristics and levels of physical activity were also assessed. Multivariate analysis was usedto examine factors associated with depressive symptoms.Results: High levels of depressive symptoms were reported by 21.2% of participants(95% CI: 12.1%-33.0%) and were more common among female participants (41.2%,95% CI: 18.4%-67.1%) than male participants (14.3%, 95% CI: 5.9%-27.2%). Isolation(loneliness, being or feeling alone) (OR = 19.5, 95% CI: 1.9-203.5) and physical inactivity (OR = 9.2, 95% CI: 1.8-45.8) were the only variables independently associatedwith depressive symptoms.Conclusions: Depressive symptoms were common among Afghan refugees living inLaunceston, particularly women, and were associated with isolation and physicalinactivity. Hence these factors might usefully be targeted in local health promotionand prevention programs.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Hamrah, MS and Hoang, H and Mond, J and Pahlavanzade, B and Charkazi, A and Auckland, S
Keywords: Afghan, depressive symptoms, Launceston, occurrence, refugees
Journal or Publication Title: Early intervention in psychiatry
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN: 1751-7885
DOI / ID Number:
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Copyright 2020 John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd

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