Evaluating a Mental Health Program for Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon

Nasser Yassin, Asma A. Taha, Zeina Ghantous, Mia Malda Atoui, Fabio Forgione

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Medecins sans Frontière, an international non-governmental organization, initiated a mental health program for Palestinian refugees living in Lebanon. To evaluate the impact of the program after its completion, focus groups were conducted with three target groups: (1) patients, (2) staff, and (3) local community stakeholders. Participants voiced overall satisfaction with the program. The program provided easy access, good quality care, decreased stigma, as perceived by participants, and revealed a sense of community contentedness. In addition, several short-term outcomes were achieved, such as increasing the numbers of patients visiting the center/ receiving mental health treatment. However, lack of planning for sustainability and proper procedures for hand-over of the program constituted a major downfall. Program discontinuation posed ethical dilemmas, common in provisional interventions in underprivileged refugee communities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)388-398
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Immigrant and Minority Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018


  • Lebanon
  • Medecins sans Frontières (MSF)
  • Mental health program
  • Non-Governmental Organization (NGO)
  • Program evaluation
  • Refugee community
  • Sustainability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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