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Year : 2009  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 145-151

Iraqi refugees in Egypt: an exploration of their mental health and psychosocial status

1 Consultant Psychiatrist at Behman Hospital in Cairo (Egypt). He is the chairman of Iraqi Association for Child Mental Health (IACMH)
2 Atallahisa Consultant Psychiatrist at Behman Hospital in Cairo (Egypt)

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Thousands of Iraqis have settled in Egypt since 2003, escaping death threats, torture, kidnappings and military attacks to face uncertainty in their lives and increasing strain on the psychosocial challenges in their new lives. This explorative study describes the psychosocial stress faced by these Iraqi refugees in Egypt. Two hundred and four Iraqis in Egypt filled in a checklist focussing on four groups of stress factors. The data provided by this study demonstrate the contribution of violence to Iraqi refugees' life from a number of sources. More than 56% have experienced multiple traumatic situations before immigration and the refugees themselves report major impacts on their health, mental health and socio-economic demands. A motivated desire to return home was preferred by only one third of respondents.

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