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Screening for PTSD symptoms in unaccompanied refugee minors: a test of the CRIES-8 questionnaire in routine care
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Social Medicine.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Social Medicine.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Social Medicine.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences.
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2017 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of Public Health, ISSN 1403-4948, E-ISSN 1651-1905, Vol. 45, no 6, 605-611 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Aims: The dramatic increase in the number of refugees in Europe presents a major public health challenge. The limited existing evidence indicates that the mental health needs of refugees are significant; unaccompanied refugee minors (URMs) constitute a particularly vulnerable group. In this study, we aimed to investigate whether a short questionnaire (Children's Revised Impact of Event Scale; CRIES-8) could be used as a screening tool for PTSD symptoms in URMs, 8-18 years old, during their routine health check-up.

Methods: Data were collected at the healthcare centre for asylum-seekers in Uppsala, Sweden. In total, 208 URMs completed the CRIES-8 during their health assessment.

Results: The CRIES-8 was feasible to use, showed good internal consistency and its factor structure was confirmed. Children with less than four years of education often had difficulties completing the questionnaire by themselves and needed help reading the questions. Almost all the respondents were male (98%), aged 9-18 years. The majority (81%) came from Afghanistan. About 76% scored above the cut-off and therefore were considered to be at risk of PTSD. The proportion of children who screened positive did not differ based on age, country of origin or current living arrangements.

Conclusions: The CRIES-8 is a useful tool in clinical settings, however, children should be provided with reading support and instructions about how to complete the questionnaire. The high number of children who screened positive for PTSD symptoms indicates the need for a more thorough mental health assessment, and early prevention/intervention programmes to address URMs' mental health issues.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
SAGE PUBLICATIONS LTD , 2017. Vol. 45, no 6, 605-611 p.
Keyword [en]
Unaccompanied refugee minors, PTSD symptoms, screening, CRIES-8
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-333721DOI: 10.1177/1403494817715516ISI: 000407103400004PubMedID: 28669316OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-333721DiVA: diva2:1157522
Available from: 2017-11-16 Created: 2017-11-16 Last updated: 2017-11-16Bibliographically approved

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Salari, RaziyeSarkadi, Anna

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Social MedicineDepartment of Public Health and Caring Sciences
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