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Sociodemographic Predictors of Health-Related Quality of Life and Healthcare Service Utilisation among Young Refugees in South Australia

DOI: 10.4236/ojpsych.2016.61002    3,406 Downloads   3,848 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

Although refugee adolescents and children are recognised as a health risk population, few studies have explored their Health-related Quality of Life (HRQOL). The present study investigated 1) the sociodemographic predictors of HRQOL such as ethnicity, trauma exposure, and length of residency in Australia in a multiethnic paediatric population with refugee experiences and 2) the relationship between mental healthcare utilisation and HRQOL. Method: Participants were 458 adolescents and children, aged 4 - 17 years, living in South Australia. Parents provided data across the sample and adolescents also completed questionnaires. Overall HRQOL and its composite functional dimensions were assessed using the Paediatric Quality of Life (PedsQL) instrument. Questions from the Child and Adolescent Component of the Australian National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing were used to assess service utilisation. Results: Migration region/ethnicity predicted better HRQOL as well as physical, emotional and psychosocial functioning for both children and adolescents. African youths indicated higher HRQOL than those from the former Yugoslavia and the Middle East/South Asia respectively. Pre-migration trauma exposure was associated with lower HRQOL; and longer stay in Australia was related to lower emotional functioning in children. There was a negative association between healthcare service utilisation and PedsQL scores, with participants accessing services demonstrating lower HRQOL. Conclusion: Using more rigorous methods, future research is needed to investigate additional sociodemographic predictors of HRQOL, and protective/risk factors that impact on HRQOL of young refugees.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Ziaian, T. , Anstiss, H. , Antoniou, G. , Puvimanasinghe, T. and Baghurst, P. (2016) Sociodemographic Predictors of Health-Related Quality of Life and Healthcare Service Utilisation among Young Refugees in South Australia. Open Journal of Psychiatry, 6, 8-19. doi: 10.4236/ojpsych.2016.61002.

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