Characteristics of Successful and Unsuccessful Mental Health Referrals of Refugees

Patricia J. Shannon, Gregory A. Vinson, Tonya L. Cook, Evelyn Lennon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


In this community based participatory research study, we explored key characteristics of mental health referrals of refugees using stories of providers collected through an on-line survey. Ten coders sorted 60 stories of successful referrals and 34 stories of unsuccessful referrals into domains using the critical incident technique. Principal components analysis yielded categories of successful referrals that included: active care coordination, establishing trust, proactive resolution of barriers, and culturally responsive care. Unsuccessful referrals were characterized by cultural barriers, lack of care coordination, refusal to see refugees, and system and language barriers. Recommendations for training and policy are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)555-568
Number of pages14
JournalAdministration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015, Springer Science+Business Media New York.


  • Mental health system navigation
  • Refugee barriers to care
  • Refugee mental health
  • Refugee mental health screening
  • Refugee service utilization


Dive into the research topics of 'Characteristics of Successful and Unsuccessful Mental Health Referrals of Refugees'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this