Effects of Mental Health Paraprofessional Training for Filipina Foreign Domestic Workers in Singapore.
Research has found that 24% of foreign domestic workers (FDWs) in Singapore have poor mental health (24%), with depressive symptoms being identified as the second most severe psychological symptoms . The study assessed the acceptability and effectiveness of a 4-week cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)-based paraprofessional training program for FDWs in Singapore on depression literacy and CBT knowledge (primary outcomes), depression-related stigma, as well as attitudes towards seeking professional help (secondary outcomes) immediately and 2 months following the training. Forty female Filipino FDWs were recruited and randomized into either a CBT-based paraprofessional training program or wait-list (WL) group. Participants completed outcome measures before, after, and 2 months following their training. No significant difference was found on changes on any of the outcome variables in the intervention group as compared to the WL group. Following training, both groups showed significantly improved depression literacy, CBT knowledge, and attitudes towards seeking professional help. These changes were sustained at 2-month follow-up. All participants indicated a high level of satisfaction with the training program. While findings from between-group analyses do not support the efficacy of the CBT-based paraprofessional training program in improving depression literacy and related outcomes, participation in the program was associated with improvements in several outcomes within the training group. Future research should explore adaptations to the program (e.g., in terms of training duration and modes of delivery) that would increase its efficacy in improving depression literacy and CBT knowledge among FDWs.
Wong, MHM; Keng, S-L; Buck, PJ; Suthendran, S; Wessels, A; Østbye, T
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