Modeling Psychological Functioning in Refugees

Cheryl L Robertson, Kay Savik, Michelle A Mathiason Moore, Amin Mohamed, Sarah J Hoffman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Refugee trauma survivors often experience posttraumatic stress disorder, other anxiety disorders, depression, and somatization. As a result, many suffer a disproportionate vulnerability to a variety of interpersonal, health, and social problems. OBJECTIVE: The study purpose was to develop a preliminary predictive model identifying high-risk refugee trauma survivors based on levels of trauma and psychological functioning. METHOD: A subset of 449 Somali and Oromo refugee trauma survivors was randomly selected from a larger study for secondary data analysis. Data from the PTSD Checklist–Civilian version, the Revised Hopkins Symptom Checklist, and the Sheehan Disability Inventory contributed to a psychological functioning score. A researcher-developed survey contributed to a composite trauma score. RESULTS: Predictors associated with functioning level differed by gender. Of interest, caring for children and increasing coping strategies were related to lower functioning in women. The regression relationship between trauma and functioning was linear in men but quadratic in women. CONCLUSION: Understanding the mechanisms linking trauma and function is implicated in the assessment of risk among trauma survivors. Predictive models inform the effective psychosocial interventions targeting those at greatest risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)225-232
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, © The Author(s) 2016.


  • Oromo
  • Somali
  • refugees
  • torture
  • trauma


Dive into the research topics of 'Modeling Psychological Functioning in Refugees'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this