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Anales del Sistema Sanitario de Navarra

Print version ISSN 1137-6627


MARTINEZ MONEO, M.  and  MARTINEZ LARREA, A.. Migration and psychiatric diseases. Anales Sis San Navarra [online]. 2006, vol.29, suppl.1, pp.63-75. ISSN 1137-6627.

Immigration is an emergent social phenomenon with a great impact on health systems. Psychiatric disorders are said to be universal phenomenon, but their clinical expression may be determined by cultural factors. Indeed, immigration acts as a risk factor for the development of mental diseases, as it works as a stress generating factor. The adaptability process for both the immigrants and the receptor environment, involves a social and cultural effort that modifies interindividual relationships, mainly at the therapeutic level. Psychiatry faces up to a new therapeutic and diagnostic challenge, where ethnocultural barriers (either individual or collective) and social and biological barriers need to be got over. Barriers to access to Mental Health Services or social resources and language differences mean an important obstacle which has to be got over by health systems providing special mental health programs, either segregationist or integrative. This review tries to summarize the different issues that limit or interfere with daily clinical practice when treating the immigrant population, meaningful both in quantitative and qualitative psychiatric terms.

Keywords : Transcultural psychiatry; Migration; Depresion; Schizophrenia.

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