Exploring the Mental, Social, and Lifestyle Effects of a Positive COVID-19 Infection on Syrian Refugees in Jordan: A Qualitative Study

Khalid A. Kheirallah, Bayan F. Ababneh, Heba Bendak, Ahmed R. Alsuwaidi, Iffat Elbarazi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Migrants and refugees are among the vulnerable populations that suffered disproportionately from the COVID-19 crisis. However, their experiences with COVID-19 positivity status have not been investigated. This study explored the physical, mental, and psychosocial impacts of a positive COVID-19 diagnosis on Syrian refugees living in Jordan. Using a qualitative approach, twenty phone interviews were conducted with ten adult Syrian refugees living within the camp and ten refugees living in non-camp (host community) settings in Jordan. Follow-up interviews with five health care providers at a refugee camp were conducted to explore the services and support provided to the refugees with COVID-19 infection. The findings were thematically analyzed and grouped into major themes, subthemes, and emerging themes. Refugees living within camp settings had better access to testing, healthcare, and disease management and did not experience fear of being deported. Refugees in both settings suffered mental and psychosocial health impacts, social isolation, fear of death, and disease complications. COVID-19 infection has negatively impacted refugees’ well-being with noticeable disparities across the different living conditions. Refugees living within host community settings may need more support for managing their condition, accessibility to free testing, as well as treatment and healthcare services.

Original languageEnglish
Article number12588
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume19
Issue number19
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • camps
  • community
  • healthcare
  • refugee
  • well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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