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Estimating mental distress in Vietnam: the use of the SRQ-20

Richardson, L.K., Amstadter, A.B., Kilpatrick, D.G., Gaboury, M.T., Trinh, L.T., Lam, T.T., Nguyen, T.T., Tuan, T., La, T.B, Tran, T.M. and Acierno, R. (2010) Estimating mental distress in Vietnam: the use of the SRQ-20. The International Journal of Social Psychiatry, 56 (2). pp. 133-142.

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Background: Community-based estimates of psychopathology prevalence in developing countries such as Vietnam, are needed to reduce presumed significant burden of poor mental health. Aims: This study derived population-based prevalence estimates of mental distress, as measured by the SRQ-20, in a community sample of 4,981 adults living in Vietnam. This study also examined correlates of mental distress based on SRQ-20 caseness indications. Risk and protective factors were identified in terms of their unique contribution to caseness. Results: Using a cut-off of 7/8, 19.2% of the sample was considered to be a probable case (n = 954), with females endorsing more items than males. Marital status and employment status were not associated with mental health distress. Higher wealth, endorsing religious affi liation, and self-reports of good health were associated with lower SRQ-20 scores. Age and being female were associated with higher SRQ-20 scores. Conclusions: A single item was as adequate a measure of wealth as multi-item rating scales. Our estimate of mental distress using the SRQ-20 is much greater than that of other studies, and in contrast to western prevalence studies, age was not a protective factor in this study. The SRQ-20 is a brief, cost-effective and reasonably valid measure of both community and individual mental distress.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Psychology
Publisher: Sage
Copyright: The authors
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