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MHPSS in Guinea Conakry – A Literature Review
english ebola

MHPSS in Guinea Conakry – A Literature Review

The World Health Organization (WHO) requested a Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) literature review of countries impacted by the Ebola virus, including Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea. International Medical Corps expressed an interest in completing the review for Guinea and commissioned a rigorous review of the literature on pre-existing information relevant to mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) in Guinea, in the French and English languages. This report presents the findings using an integrated psychological and anthropological framework that is instrumental in understanding MHPSS needs, and how to devise culturally-appropriate MHPSS interventions in Ebola-affected areas.

The report outlines the key findings of the existing academic and grey literature related to Guinean mental health and psychosocial issues and services, with a specific emphasis on the recent Ebola humanitarian crisis. The review was conducted in June-July 2015 and identified relevant academic publications using academic search engines and databases (Google scholar, Medline, Pubmed, PSYCHinfo, APA psycNET, and Anthrosource). The search was extended through manual searches on Google in French and English, and in the journals: Social Science and Medicine; Culture, Medicine, and Psychiatry, Transcultural Psychiatry; and Medical Anthropology. Researchers with relevant expert knowledge were also consulted. The overall search identified academic sources, but also relevant reports, policy documents and internet resources.

The report introduces general background information regarding the population of Guinea, its religions, history, politics, economics and health. It subsequently summarizes information on mental health and psychosocial issues including prevalence, local nosologies, help-seeking strategies, formal and informal resources of MHPSS sources of support. There is discussion of the ways in which causes and course of illness and misfortune are intertwined with plural cosmologies and with individuals’ relationships with the living, the dead, the spirit world, and nature itself. Finally, the humanitarian crisis of Ebola in Guinea is explored, alongside responses to it, and its social and psychological ramifications for the affected population.

The scholarly and grey literature available on MHPSS specifically in Guinea was limited and thinly spread over many documents. This presented a challenge when writing this report and we acknowledge that there may have been further relevant material to be found in sources that did not focus specifically on MHPSS, but which it was not possible to obtain within the time-scale of the review. Nonetheless, we hope the report can provide useful insights for policy-makers, donors, governments and service-providers.

To access review please visit http://mhpss.net/?get=268/Guinea-MHPSS-Literature-Review-2015-English1.pdf or download Guinea MHPSS Literature Review 2015 English here.

 

Guidance to provide MHPSS care for pregnant women and for families with microcephaly in the context of Zika virus
ZIKA IMAGE
Psychosocial support for pregnant women and for families with microcephaly and other neurological complications in the context of Zika virus
Interim guidance for health-care providers

 

On 1 February 2016 WHO announced that a cluster of microcephaly and other neurologic disorders reported in Brazil is a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. Several countries have reported an increase in the incidence of cases of microcephaly and/or Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) (2) concurrent with Zika virus outbreak. A causal relationship between Zika infection during pregnancy and microcephaly is strongly suspected, though not scientifically proven.

This document describes guidance for a supportive response by healthcare providers (e.g. physicians, nurses), focusing primarily on women affected by Zika virus infection during pregnancy and their families, for their mental health and psychosocial needs.

Translations of this document in Spanish and Portuguese will also soon be available on mhpss.net. To access these and other resources related to  this crisis please go to  Zika – Microcephaly, Emergency Response, 2016.

 

 

New Group: Zika – Microcephaly, Emergency Response, 2016. JOIN NOW..
February 7, 2016
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zika virus
New Group - Microcephaly, Emergency Response, 2016

 

The rapid spread of Zika virus across the globe, but especially in the Americas, and its association with congenital deformities in babies and neurological conditions in adults and children has been widely reported in recent weeks. The World Health Organization has declared that Zika Virus constitute a public health emergency of international concern.

This group is designated to provide a forum for discussion, sharing knowledge and practices on the ongoing initiatives for the Zika/Microcephaly emergency response. This can include sharing practices, case studies, guidelines, materials (Information, Educational and communication health materials), research results or work in progress which can support practitioners, researchers, policy makers to respond to this emergency.

Click this link to join the group on the Zika – Microcephaly, Emergency Response, 2016

Now Available in Multiple Languages! A multi-agency guidance note on “MHPSS for Refugees, Asylum-seekers and Migrants on the Move in Europe”
January 11, 2016
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A multi-agency guidance note – “Mental Health and Psychosocial Support for Refugees, Asylum-seekers and Migrants on the Move in Europe” is now available here in the English language.

 

 

 

To access the translations please click on the following links:

This brief guidance note provides advice on protecting and supporting the mental health and psychosocial well being of refugees, asylum-seekers and migrants on the move in Europe. It describes key principles and appropriate interventions to guide all those who are designing and organizing emergency services and/or providing direct assistance to the affected people.

JOIN GROUP: Europe-Mediterranean 2015 Migration Response. Click here to join
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Europe-Mediterranean 2015 Migration Response – Join Group on mhpss.net

This group is designated to provide a forum for discussion, sharing knowledge and practices on the ongoing Europe-Mediterranean 2015 Migration Response. This can include sharing practices, case studies, guidelines, research results or work in progress which can support practitioners, researchers, policy makers or programmers supporting settlement of refugees in Europe.

Click this link to join the group on the Europe-Mediterranean 2015 Migration Response

Final Report of the Hague Symposium “Growing up in conflict” is available now
December 26, 2015
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GROWING UP IN CONFLICT : THE IMPACT ON CHILDREN’S HEALTH AND PSYCHOSOCIAL WELLBEING

( 26-28 MAY, THE HAGUE)

The Final report on this symposium is available at this link.

Recordings of the “Growing up in Conflict” Symposium sessions on 26th and 27th May 2015 are available to view via this link on MHPSS.net.

The Symposium on “Growing Up in Conflict”  assembled experts on mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS); practitioners, especially colleagues from agencies working in conflict-affected countries; academics; and representatives from United Nations agencies and non-governmental organizations to review the state of field in terms of knowledge and evidence, share insights on current field practice and programming, and make recommendations for advancing knowledge and practice.

The Symposium was hosted by UNICEF in partnership with the Government of the Netherlands in The Hague and supported by UNICEF’s Peacebuilding, Education and Advocacy programme, ‘Learning for Peace’, which implements innovative programming on education for peacebuilding in 14 countries around the world. The Symposium was intended to inform a range of initiatives such as No Lost Generation, which address the immediate and long-term consequences of the Syria crisis on a generation of children and youth.

The Symposium featured two days of panels and expert discussions, followed by a day for a core group of practitioners to share experiences in a planning workshop. This third day offered field colleagues from different agencies the chance to collaborate and learn from each other. The Symposium also provided an opportunity for advocacy. In particular, the concluding session of the second day brought together donor governments and practitioners from the field. The outputs of the Symposium will contribute to advocacy around the World Humanitarian Summit and post-2015 Development Agenda discussions

Webinar Recording Now Available
November 15, 2015
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Integration of Mental Health into Primary Health Care Services during Humanitarian Emergencies

Thursday, 29th of October, 2015, 16:00 UTC

Webinar Recording now available at this link. (Length : 1 hour 37 minutes including Q&A session)

Humanitarian emergencies constitute a significant challenge to health services in general and mental health services specifically. At the same time, these emergencies are usually ‘windows’ for change and introduction of new policies, and strategies. Integration of mental health into primary health care services is identified as an effective way of overcoming the lack of specialized mental health professionals, inaccessible mental health services, and stigma associated with mental illness. Starting this process of integration during the emergency or shortly after has its own requirements and contextual adaptation. mhpss.net through the webinar ‘Integration of Mental Health into Primary Health Care Services during Humanitarian Emergencies ’ is trying to explore the various aspects of this process and highlight lessons learned from different areas of the world. The webinar will include presentations by Dr. Peter Hughes (United Kingdom), and Dr. Neerja Chowdhary (India). The webinar will be moderated by Dr. Mohamed Elshazly, Global Host for MENA Region at mhpss.net. 

About our speakers:

pic-chowdry

Dr. Neerja Chowdhary, as a psychiatrist with a keen interest in public mental health. She spent the last 10 years in India gaining valuable experience in development of mental health interventions (and manuals) for delivery by non-specialists in low resource settings, training and supervision of specialists and non-specialists to ensure highest quality of care, networking and collaborating with government and NGO partners and disseminating research findings to various stakeholders, including policy makers. She led community based clinical and research programs in which the main goal has been integrating mental health in already existing health systems. She a number of publications in peer-reviewed journals. She has a Masters in Epidemiology from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, an additional qualification that has contributed to strengthening her public health skills.  Her experience in humanitarian settings includes assignments in Chad, Libya and Afghanistan. Her current position with International Medical Corps as the Global Mental Health Coordinator involves the evaluation and documentation of three programs that have used the WHO  mhGAP material to integrate mental health in general health care settings.

pic-peter

Dr. Peter Hughes, Consultant Psychiatrist/ Hon Senior Lecturer Springfield University Hospital, London. Chair of Volunteering and International Psychiatry special Interest Group at Royal College of Psychiatrists. Lead for Kings Sierra Leone mental health link and Somaliland Kings THET link. Extensive field experience in global mental health including complex humanitarian emergency. Main interest area -training health workers.

Our Host:

webinar- mohamed

Mohamed Elshazly, is Regional Host for Middle East and North Africa at mhpss.net. Mohamed is a qualified medical doctor and psychiatrist from Egypt with more than a decade of experience in clinical mental health services, training and MHPSS services in emergencies. He is working now as Regional MHPSS Advisor- Middle East, at International Medical Corps.

Click now to join Webinar : Integration of Mental Health into Primary Health Care Services during Humanitarian Emergencies
October 29, 2015
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Webinar-pic

Integration of Mental Health into Primary Health Care Services during Humanitarian Emergencies

Thursday, 29th of October, 2015, 16:00 UTC

Dear Webinar Participant,

Please click here now to log into the webinar room.

Choose to sign in as a Guest, and type in your name as you would like others to see you.
We look forward to meeting you!

—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————– Humanitarian emergencies constitute a significant challenge to health services in general and mental health services specifically. At the same time, these emergencies are usually ‘windows’ for change and introduction of new policies, and strategies. Integration of mental health into primary health care services is identified as an effective way of overcoming the lack of specialized mental health professionals, inaccessible mental health services, and stigma associated with mental illness. Starting this process of integration during the emergency or shortly after has its own requirements and contextual adaptation. mhpss.net through the webinar ‘Integration of Mental Health into Primary Health Care Services during Humanitarian Emergencies ’ is trying to explore the various aspects of this process and highlight lessons learned from different areas of the world. The webinar will include presentations by Dr. Peter Hughes (United Kingdom), and Dr. Neerja Chowdhary (India). The webinar will be moderated by Dr. Mohamed Elshazly, Global Host for MENA Region at mhpss.net. As background reading for this webinar, please check this link with the special issue of  ’Intervention’ journal discussing the integration of Mental Health care into existing systems of health care during and after complex humanitarian emergencies. The webinar will take place on Thursday 29th of October, at 16:00 UTC Follow this link to find out what time that is in your country. To register for the webinar please email dayani [@] mhpss.net with the following information:

  • Name:
  • Organisation (if applicable):
  • Role:
  • Location (City/Country):
  •  Email address:
  • Are you a member of mhpss.net?  

About our speakers : pic-chowdryDr. Neerja Chowdhary, as a psychiatrist with a keen interest in public mental health. She spent the last 10 years in India gaining valuable experience in development of mental health interventions (and manuals) for delivery by non-specialists in low resource settings, training and supervision of specialists and non-specialists to ensure highest quality of care, networking and collaborating with government and NGO partners and disseminating research findings to various stakeholders, including policy makers. She led community based clinical and research programs in which the main goal has been integrating mental health in already existing health systems. She a number of publications in peer-reviewed journals. She has a Masters in Epidemiology from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, an additional qualification that has contributed to strengthening her public health skills.  Her experience in humanitarian settings includes assignments in Chad, Libya and Afghanistan. Her current position with International Medical Corps as the Global Mental Health Coordinator involves the evaluation and documentation of three programs that have used the WHO mhGAP material to integrate mental health in general health care settings.   pic-peterDr. Peter Hughes, Consultant Psychiatrist/ Hon Senior Lecturer Springfield University Hospital, London. Chair of Volunteering and International Psychiatry special Interest Group at Royal College of Psychiatrists. Lead for Kings Sierra Leone mental health link and Somaliland Kings THET link. Extensive field experience in global mental health including complex humanitarian emergency. Main interest area -training health workers.     About our Host: webinar- mohamedMohamed Elshazly, is Regional Host for Middle East and North Africa at mhpss.net. Mohamed is a qualified medical doctor and psychiatrist from Egypt with more than a decade of experience in clinical mental health services, training and MHPSS services in emergencies. He is working now as Regional MHPSS Advisor- Middle East, at International Medical Corps.

DIGNITY IN MENTAL HEALTH – Celebrating World Mental Health Day 2015
October 20, 2015
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The World Federation for Mental Health’s goal when it established World Mental Health Day in 1992 was public education at all levels of society. The Day, celebrated internationally on October 10, has more than fulfilled this aim. It provides an occasion for many regional and local efforts to put the spotlight on a selected aspect of mental health care–with the added bonus of participating in a broadly celebrated international event. “Dignity in Mental Health” provides the kind of topic that is relevant everywhere, and can be defined according to local circumstances and needs. We have collected a group of papers from our expert authors who show that dignity in the mental health context can have many meanings and can be applied to every aspect of care. Further, a concern for dignity counters the discrimination and bias that are all too often encountered by people with mental illness.”

- Excerpt from the message from Dr. Patt Franciosi (Chair, World Mental Health Day World Federation for Mental Health)

Read the material here.

Culture, Context and the Mental Health and Psychosocial Wellbeing of Syrians
Syria report UNHCR
A Review for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Staff Working with Syrians Affected by Armed Conflict 2015
This report aims to provide information on the sociocultural background of the Syrian population as well as cultural aspects of mental health and psychosocial wellbeing relevant to care and support. it is based on an extensive review of the available literature on mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS), within the context of the current armed conflict in Syria.
The document is primarily meant to inform mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) staff, such as: psychologists, psychosocial counsellors, social workers, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurses, and others who are involved providing individual or group counselling, psychotherapy and/or psychiatric treatment for Syrians. Other humanitarian professionals, such as general health providers working with Syrians or staff involved in public health, community-based protection, community mobilisation, child protection, sexual and gender based violence (SGBV), may find this document useful, although it is not primarily written for them.
The specific information in this review complements more generic guidance, such as the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Guidelines for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings and UNHCR’s Operational Guidance for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Programming in Refugee Operations. Together with these guidelines, this report can inform the design and delivery of interventions to promote mental health and psychosocial wellbeing of Syrians affected by armed conflict and displacement, both within Syria and in countries hosting refugees from Syria.
Suggested citation: Hassan, G, Kirmayer, LJ, Mekki- Berrada A., Quosh, C., el Chammay, R., Deville-Stoetzel, J.B., Youssef, A., Jefee-Bahloul, H., Barkeel-Oteo, A., Coutts, A., Song, S. & Ventevogel, P. Culture, Context and the Mental Health and Psychosocial Wellbeing of Syrians: A Review for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support staff working with Syrians Affected by Armed Conflict. Geneva: UNHCR, 2015
Photo credit: ©2014 Turjoy Chowdhury, Courtesy of Photoshare