Document Type



Final Published Version

Publication Title

Forum: The Journal of Lifelong Learning in Psychiatry



Publication Date



About 3.2 percent of the population across the globe are migrants. Today, unprecedented numbers of people are relocating in the U.S. and more than ever, psychiatrists find themselves caring for immigrant patients. International migration is a multilayered issue that often has implications for the mental health of migrants. Thus, there is an increasing interest in understanding how the different factors associated with migration processes affect the mental health outcomes of immigrants. We group these factors into three categories: immigrant process, clinical encounter, and mental health services. When possible, we incorporate a gendered and life span perspective and suggest avenues for including what we know into the care of children, adults, and elderly psychiatric patients with immigrant backgrounds. We pay special attention to the immigrant paradox literature, which explains why some immigrants are healthier when they start their journey, and why their mental health deteriorates as they live longer in the host societies. We aim at providing psychiatrists an understanding of what to ask, assess, and consider when caring for patients who are international migrants.


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