We are both pleased and proud to present our latest issue, now available to read in full online!
Cover Photo by Ashley Ulm
The Consequences of Untreated Trauma: Syrian Refugee Children in Lebanon – By Maria Hawilo, JD
Exposure to violence can leave a lasting impression on children. Evidence suggests that even just one exposure to violence can increase the likelihood of future exposure to violence. A devastating consequence of war is the unrelenting exposure to trauma, particularly refugees. Childhood trauma has lasting effects on children’s behavior, including increased incidence of delinquency and mental health disorders. Dr. Hawilo explores how the refugee crisis is affecting Syrian children in Lebanon and how research can help design interventions to improve health outcomes for victims of violence.
A Path to Physical and Mental Health Care for Syrian Refugees in the US? – Anna Maitland, JD/MA
Fewer than 1% of refugees are resettled each year, and refugees are often chosen for resettlement because of heightened vulnerability or urgent illness. For those who are resettled, accessing health care requires navigating language barriers, a complex and confusing health care system, different health care customs or beliefs, and sometimes discrimination. Anna Maitland discusses how immigration status affects health access for refugees and assylees, and she delves into the infrastructure and agencies available to support refugees once they have resettled to the US. She argues: “while mental health and depression among this refugee population has reached staggering rates, the difficulty of navigating the US health system only further isolates, marginalizes, and traumatizes people in need of holistic health services. Given these issues, health care providers and social services in the United States have a duty to build better protections for this refugee population, including improving their access to health care through more programs, greater support, empowerment and choice-based accompaniment, and a deeper understanding of their prevailing needs.”
The Public Health Crisis in Greece – By Nelly Papalambros
Greece is in the throws of the greatest recession in modern history. The economic crisis in Greece has wreaked havoc on the health and healthcare of the county’s people. Government cutbacks in healthcare spending have led to drug and doctor shortages, a resurgence in diseases of poverty, and reduced access to routine screening. Meanwhile, the stress of the economic crisis has led to a mental health crisis. Under the current circumstances, refugees trapped in Greece are experiencing many of the same health access problems. Despite the crisis, the Greek people have come together to support the refugees in ways big and small.
To Learn is To Rebuild – By Jacquelyn Pavilon
The refugee crisis has displaced over 65 million people creating an immense need for mental health and educational services, particularly for children. Jacquelyn Pavilon describes the need to address the three levels of trauma that refugees experience: trauma from the conflict, trauma from the journey, and trauma from not being accepted in a new community. Unfortunately, these three levels are particularly impactful child development. Without proper access to education or mental health services, kids struggle to develop positive interpersonal and coping skills. Pavilon states that only 50% of child refugees have access to primary education and around 25% have access to secondary education. She goes on to feature the unique and positive work of the Jesuit Refugee Services (JRS) education center working to use education as a method for social support. Pavilon argues that through education we can build resiliency in children and give them back their lives.
Education as a Path to Long-Term Health in Refugee and Displaced Populations – By Osefame Ewaleifoh
Content of summaries by NPHR editing staff
Photos By Mustafa Khayat (Creative Commons, children), Dina Baslan (Creative Commons, Refugee Camp), Elaine Shen (infographic), Nelly Papalambros (pharmacist)