Prabhjot Kour skal forsvare avhandlingen sin for graden philosophiae doctor (ph.d.) ved Universitetet i Sørøst-Norge.
Hun har fulgt doktorgradsprogrammet i personorientert helsearbeid ved Fakultet for helse- og sosialvitenskap ved campus Drammen.
Alle interesserte ønskes velkommen til prøveforelesning og disputas.
The question that initiated this doctoral research in the first place was why was it important to focus on immigrants in Norway and why specifically on mental health and substance use among them?
To answer why: immigrants in Norway contributes to 19.9 % of total population (as per 1st January, 2023), which is a substantial proportion. Immigrants are often at the risk of developing psychological distress and involvement in substance use, due to variety of pre- and post-migration factors, leading to co-occurring mental health and substance use problems (COP). This is added up various barriers they experience while accessing the healthcare services, and thus resulting in lower utilization of mental health and addiction services, lower treatment engagement, higher dropout rate, and less frequent hospitalizations.
This thesis, therefore, has sought to increase scientific knowledge of the experiences of immigrants living with COP, with a particular focus on coping and treatment experiences, in addition to the perspectives of health professionals. The overall aim was to explore the coping and treatment experiences of immigrant men living with co-occurring substance use and mental health problems in Norway, from the perspectives of immigrants and health professionals.
Through individual interviews with immigrant men living with COP along with focus group interviews with health professionals, this thesis provides the enhanced understanding of migration as an important variable in coping and treatment experiences. The participants further described various barriers and facilitators to the treatment engagement. These findings suggest the need for more person-centred and culturally competent approaches in Norwegian mental health and addiction services. Professional interpreters are warranted, in addition to strategies that can develop personal skills among immigrants living with COP. Strategies to reduce stigma and racism in different institutions are also needed in order to enhance immigrants’ sense of belonging and participation in mainstream Norwegian society.