Health Reports

A Canadian peer-reviewed journal of population health and health services research

June 2021

Access to mental health consultations by immigrants and refugees in Canada

by Edward Ng and Haozhen Zhang

The share of immigrants and refugees in Canada reached 22% in 2016, a historical high in almost a century. Immigration is expected to be a key driver of Canada’s economy and the country’s population growth into the future. As the number of immigrants grows, and given that the immigration process and the subsequent settlement challenges can be stressful, a better understanding of newcomers’ mental health outcomes and their use of services becomes particularly important for policymakers and service providers. Mental health research is especially needed for immigrant populations and subgroups, such as refugees. Because of existing data gaps, few quantitative studies have examined immigrants’ mental health outcomes by admission class, and those that did generally reported that refugees experienced higher stress or poorer mental health outcomes than others (compared with other immigrants or the Canadian-born population). One such study, based on a nationwide health survey (i.e., the Canadian Community Health Survey [CCHS]) recently linked to the Longitudinal Immigration Database (IMDB), showed that immigrants, and especially refugees, were less likely than Canadian-born respondents to have a high level of self-reported mental health (SRMH), before controlling for socioeconomic and demographic factors. The SRMH levels significantly differed by immigrants’ world source region and by how long they had been in Canada; for example, recent arrivals and those from North Africa, the Middle East, and West and East Asia had lower levels of SRMH than the Canadian-born population. Given that mental health consultation (MHC) is important to prevent mental illness and to promote mental well-being, there is a need to examine whether a lower level of SRMH is correlated to a lack of MHC.

Abstract Full article PDF version The Daily release

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Access to mental health consultations by immigrants and refugees in Canada

Cancer in First Nations people in Ontario, Canada: Incidence and mortality, 1991 to 2010

by Sehar Jamal, Carmen Jones, Jennifer Walker, Maegan Mazereeuw, Amanda J. Sheppard, David Henry, and Loraine D. Marrett

There are three distinct Indigenous groups in Canada: First Nations, Inuit and Métis (FNIM). They have unique histories, languages, cultural practices and beliefs. First Nations comprise the largest of these groups, with over 230,000 people residing in Ontario (about 2% of the provincial population and about 24% of the national First Nations population). Many First Nations people face significant barriers to achieving good health, stemming in part from colonialism, racism and social exclusion. As a result, many experience poorer health compared with the general population (e.g., lower life expectancy, higher avoidable mortality). Other factors may also contribute to poorer health outcomes, including geographic challenges that limit accessibility to health services, affordable food and education.

Abstract Full article PDF version The Daily release

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Cancer in First Nations people in Ontario, Canada: Incidence and mortality, 1991 to 2010

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