Strategy for providing integrated mental health/psychosocial support in post earthquake Haiti

The recent earthquake in Haiti exposed all the weaknesses in the mental health care system existing prior to the earthquake. This paper describes the strategy developed by the Dutch nongovernmental organisation Cordaid for providing integrated mental health and psychosocial support in Haiti after the earthquake. The strategy aimed to address mental health and psychosocial needs in the early recovery and reconsolidation phases, and to build mental health capacity of community level and primary health care providers. This would result in the establishment of a referral system between the community and health care sectors. The results of the implementation showed that mental health trainings were a feasible intervention for Haiti, but so far they have not yet resulted in change of practice of primary health care workers, and the goal of a referral system is still in an embryonic phase.

Budosan, Boris; Bruno, Rachel Frederique