Screening Tools for Mental Disorders Among Female Refugees: a Systematic Review

Orla Donnelly, Gerard Leavey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Female refugees are particularly vulnerable to mental disorders but assessment may be complex and challenging. Various screening tools have been developed for this population, but little is known about their usefulness. The main aim is to examine the literature on the effectiveness of screening tools for mental health problems among female refugees. Systematic review of PubMed, PsycINFO and Embase to locate all published work. Comprehensive search terms were used and inclusion and exclusion criteria were formulated. The initial search yielded 877 articles, of which 757 were removed after titles and abstracts were reviewed. Then, 121 full-text versions of articles were examined and 96 excluded according to the criteria. A total of 25 articles were included in this systematic review in accordance with the PRIMSA guidelines. Twenty screening tools were evaluated. There is a lack of tools used to screen refugee women, and in particular those in emergency settings. Cultural factors may not be accounted for in the development of screening instruments. Further research in this field can help inform public health policies to address social, educational and occupational inclusion for refugee women in different contexts.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-219
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Child and Adolescent Trauma
Issue number2
Early online date30 Jul 2021
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 30 Jun 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s).


  • Original Article
  • Mental disorders
  • Screening tools
  • Female refugee


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