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Syria -- History -- Civil War (2011- ) -- Refugees -- Services for, Immigrants -- Medical care, Emigration and immigration -- Health aspects


The ongoing civil war in Syria has resulted in the world's largest refugee crisis since 1945. Many Syrians have lived in a protracted exile in Jordan, the neighboring country of Syria, for more than five years. Estimates suggest that by the end of 2017, around 1.4 million Syrians lived in Jordan. As the exile continues for Syrians in Jordan, this study aimed to explore what refugees perceive as their major health needs in comparison to what service providers believe is needed for refugees in Jordan. Grounded theory and thematic analyses (Braun & Clarke, 2006) were used to analyze 17 semi-structured interviews (six interviews with service providers and eleven interviews with Syrian refugees, each around 13-45 minutes) from the etic and emic views. To enhance the rigor, two of the authors independently coded the interviews and another author created a thematic matrix based on the created codes. To reach consensus, merged codes were shared and discussed among the authors. Final themes were also created independently by two of the authors and discussed to reach consensus. Moreover, peer-debriefing and negative case analysis were used to minimize bias. Emerged themes suggest a gap between refugees’ expectations and the reality of humanitarian services, high rates of mental health problems among adults and children, neglected mental health needs among adults, an extreme vulnerability of older adult refugees. Findings suggest a need for better information sharing strategies about available health services for refugees, awareness-raising on the importance of mental needs, and targeted programs for older adults.


Presented at APHA 2020 Conference theme: "Creating the Healthiest Nation: Preventing Violence" Oct 24-28 2020

Article published Nov 2020 in the Journal of International Humanitarian Action.

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