To support promotion, prevention and early intervention for mental illness school nurses need to be mental health literate.
Three hundred and thirty-nine school nurses employed in government and private schools from three Emirates in the UAE were surveyed. A culturally adapted Mental Health Literacy questionnaire comprising three vignettes of fictional characters meeting diagnostic criteria for the target conditions along with the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale (K10) was administered to ascertain school nurses’ ability to correctly identify the conditions and to elicit beliefs about helpfulness of treatment interventions and of health care providers for these conditions.
Less than 50% of the respondents correctly identified the disorders presented, while accurate identification of evidence-based interventions was also limited. Correlations between level of psychological distress and level of inaccurate survey responses was also revealed, respondents who correctly identified the correct diagnosis of the vignette and the most appropriate interventions were those who had a significantly lower K10 score.
Low levels of mental health literacy amongst respondents in combination with potential religious and cultural factors as reported in the literature, highlight the need for curriculum enhancements for future health professionals and a targeted program of culturally appropriate professional development focused on mental health promotion for those in clinical practice. The level of psychological distress noted in this cohort also signals a need to ensure that appropriate supports are available for clinical staff employed in schools.
Abuqamar M, Coomans D, Louckx F. Correlation between socioeconomic differences and infant mortality in the Arab World (1990–2009). Int J Sociol Anthropol. 2011;3(1):15–21.
Al-Yateem N, Docherty C, Rossiter R. Determinants of quality of care for adolescents and young adults with chronic illnesses: a mixed methods study. J Pediatr Nurs. 2016;31(3):255–66. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pedn.2015.12.003. CrossRefPubMed
Almazeedi H, Alsuwaidan MT. Integrating Kuwait’s mental health system to end stigma: a call to action. J Ment Health. 2014;23(1):1–3. https://doi.org/10.3109/09638237.2013.775407. CrossRefPubMed
American Psychiatric Association. Practice guideline for the treatment of patients with major depressive disorder. 3rd ed. Arlington: American Psychiatric Association; 2010.
Andrews G, Slade T. Interpreting scores on the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale (K10). Aust NZ J Public Health. 2001;25(6):494–7. CrossRef
Benedek DM, Friedman MJ, Zatzick D, Ursano RJ. Guideline watch (March 2009) practice guideline for the treatment of patients with acute stress disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder; 2009. Arlington: American Psychiatric Association; 2009.
Blackman JA, Gurka MJ, Gurka KK, Oliver MN. Emotional, developmental and behavioral co-morbidities of children with chronic health conditions. J Paediatr Child Health. 2011;47(10):742–7. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1440-1754.2011.02044.x. CrossRefPubMed
Briggs HE. Note from the Editor: what do we really know about the role and impact of culture as a social determinant of mental health? Best Practi Mental Health. 2014;10(2):96–9.
Campbell RD, Long LA. Culture as a social determinant of mental and behavioral health: a look at culturally shaped beliefs and their impact on help-seeking behaviors and service use patterns of Black Americans with depression. Best Pract Mental Health. 2014;10(2):48–62.
Dahdouh A, Taleb M, Blecha L, Benyamina A. Genetics and psychotic disorders: a fresh look at consanguinity. Eur J Med Genet. 2016;59(2):104–10. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejmg.2015.12.010. CrossRefPubMed
Denic S, Aden B, Nagelkerke N, Essa AA. β-Thalassemia in Abu Dhabi: consanguinity and tribal stratification are major factors explaining the high prevalence of the disease. Hemoglobin. 2013;37(4):351–8. https://doi.org/10.3109/03630269.2013.790827. CrossRefPubMed
Dixon L, Perkins D, Calmes C. Guideline watch (September 2009) practice guideline for the treatment of patients with schizophrenia. Arlington: American Psychiatric Association; 2009. CrossRef
Ghaffar A. Summary of the national priority health research workshop. United Arab Emirates; 2010.
Giandinoto JA, Edward KL. The experience of mental health literacy in health professionals in non-mental health areas. Int J Health Wellness Soc. 2016;6(2):1–12. CrossRef
Guina J, Rossetter SR, DeRhodes BJ, Nahhas RW, Welton RS. Benzodiazepines for PTSD: a systematic review and meta-analysis. J Psychiatr Pract. 2015;21(4):281–303. https://doi.org/10.1097/PRA.0000000000000091. CrossRefPubMed
Health Authority of Abu Dhabi. Registered School Nurses Scope of Practice. Abu Dhabi, UAE; 2015. http://schoolsforhealth.haad.ae/media/29304/registered_school_nurse.pdf. Accessed 3 Jan 2017.
Jorm AF, Korten A, Jacomb P, Christensen H, Rodgers B, Pollitt P. “Mental health literacy”: a survey of the public’s ability to recognise mental disorders and their beliefs about the effectiveness of treatment. Med J Aust. 1997;166(4):182–6. PubMed
Kapungwe A, Cooper S, Mayeya J, Mwanza J, Mwape L, Sikwese A, Lund C. Attitudes of primary health care providers towards people with mental illness: evidence from two districts in Zambia. Afr J Psychiatry (Johannesburg). 2011;14(4):290–7. https://doi.org/10.4314/ajpsy.v14i4.6.
Kessler RC, Andrews G, Colpe LJ, Hiripi E, Mroczek DK, Normand SLT, Zaslavsky AM. Short screening scales to monitor population prevalences and trends in non-specific psychological distress. Psychol Med. 2002. https://doi.org/10.1017/s0033291702006074.
Koutelekos J, Haliasos N. Depression and thalassemia in children, adolescents and adults. Health Sci J. 2013;7(4):239–46.
Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. Vision 2021 united in ambition and determination. http://www.vision2021.ae. (2015) Accessed 3 Jan 2017.
Ndetei DM, Khasakhala LI, Mutiso V, Mbwayo AW. Knowledge, attitude and practice (KAP) of mental illness among staff in general medical facilities in Kenya: practice and policy implications. Afr J Psychiatry (Johannesbg). 2011;14(3):225–35. https://doi.org/10.4314/ajpsy.v14i3.6.
O’Reilly CL, Bell JS, Chen TF. Pharmacists’ beliefs about treatments and outcomes of mental disorders: a mental health literacy survey. Aust NZ J Psychiatry. 2010;44(12):1089–96. https://doi.org/10.3109/00048674.2010.512864. CrossRef
Patel V, Chisholm D, Dua T, Laxminarayan R, Medina-Mora ME, editors. Mental, neurological, and substance use disorders. 3rd ed. Washington D.C.: World Bank; 2015.
Patel V, Minas H, Cohen A, Prince MJ, editors. Global mental health: principles and practice. New York: Oxford University Press; 2014.
Rassool GH, editor. Cultural competence in caring for muslim patients. Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan; 2014.
Slewa-Younan S, Mond J, Bussion E, Mohammad Y, Uribe Guajardo MG, Smith M, Jorm AF. Mental health literacy of resettled Iraqi refugees in Australia: knowledge about posttraumatic stress disorder and beliefs about helpfulness of interventions. BMC Psychiatry. 2014;14(1):1–8. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12888-014-0320-x. CrossRef
Supreme Council of Health Qatar. (2013). Qatar - National Mental Health Strategy. Changing minds, changing lives 2013–2018. Doha. http://nhsq.info/app/media/1166. Accessed 3 Jan 2017.
World Health Organisation. Global status report on noncommunicable diseases. Switzerland: World Health Organisation; 2014.
Yousef S, Eapen V, Zoubeidi T, Kosanovic M, Mabrouk AA, Adem A. Learning disorder and blood concentration of heavy metals in the United Arab Emirates. Asian J Psychiatry. 2013;6(5):394–400. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajp.2013.04.005. CrossRef
- Mental health literacy of school nurses in the United Arab Emirates
Rachel Cathrine Rossiter
Walter Frederick Robb
- BioMed Central