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The Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition
ISSN: 1606-0997
EISSN: 1606-0997
Vol. 27, No. 4, 2009, pp. 477-491
Bioline Code: hn09047
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

The Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition, Vol. 27, No. 4, 2009, pp. 477-491

 en Paramedic-Conducted Mental Health Counselling for Abused Women in Rural Bangladesh: An Evaluation from the Perspective of Participants
Naved, Ruchira T.; Rimi, Nadia A.; Jahan, Shamshad & Lindmark, Gunilla


This paper reports on evaluation of an initiative to use paramedics as the first-level mental health counsellors of abused women in rural Bangladesh (2003-2004) from the perspective of the abused women who participated in one or more counselling sessions. Thirty in-depth interviews, followed by a survey (n=372), targeted to cover all participants, were conducted in 2006. Overall, the arrangement, management of ethical issues, and skills of paramedics were rated favourably. Most (89%) abused women (n=372) considered the session useful; one-fourth of these women considered it very useful; and only a few abused women considered the session useless. Usefulness of the session was expressed mostly in terms of relief attained after talking about the issue. Most (87%) women reported being encouraged to be self-confident. In a context characterized by low self-confidence of women, lack of opportunity to talk about violence, and absence of professional mental health counselling services, this initiative is sufficiently promising to warrant further testing.

Battered women; Counselling; Mental health; Paramedics; Bangladesh

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