Published: 10-12-2018 16:48 | Updated: 22-05-2019 15:23

Professor Christina Dalman receives 24,9 million SEK from the Swedish Research Council

The study, led by Professor Christina Dalman, will investigate early interventions in mental illness. Christina is group leader of the EPiCSS research group with the Department of Public Health Sciences.

Professor Christina Dalman, Department of Public Health Sciences.

Tell us about the project!

"Data show that a lower proportion of newly arrived minors receive early intervention for mental distress in the first line mental health service compared to Swedish-born. This programme aims at facilitating newly arrived children and youth to seek, and receive, appropriate help at an early stage.

"A collaboration between several disciplines is planned: epidemiologists describing and analysing the utilization of care by using comprehensive register linkages; qualitative researchers, examining barriers and perceptions of mental health in the target group; Transcultural and therapeutic experts, developing interventions to be followed by structured evaluations.

"The interventions include facilitation of access to care, followed by three therapeutic approaches. First; enhanced treatment as usual with commonly used printed material in key languages, plus basic training in trauma and migration, secondly; adaption of the recently developed Cultural Formulation Interview aimed at understanding symptoms in a cultural context and increasing compliance, and third; a parental support programme suited for the first line service and the targeted group.

"The evaluation includes a time-series design to evaluate whether accessibility to care has increased; and a quasi-experimental design with an allocation process mimicking random assignment, comparing the three interventions to treatment as usual. Given positive results, we anticipate a broader implementation."

How much time and effort were spent on the application to the Swedish Research Council?

"A lot of time and effort. We started already in early February and following the announcement by the end of March we were extremely disciplined until deadline the on the 15th of May. Nothing else on our minds and planned journeys were cancelled. It was a super team work!"

What are you hoping that this project will lead to?

"Better mental health care at an early stage for newly arrived children and youth. Mental health is crucial for integration in society and life in general, and is possible to achieve."