Strategies to improve access to mental health services: Perspectives of African migrants and service providers in South Australia

Nelsensius Klau Fauk, Anna Ziersch, Hailay Gesesew, Paul Russell Ward, Lillian Mwanri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
5 Downloads (Pure)


Access to mental health services is essential to improving health and well-being of population groups including migrants. This paper describes views and perspectives of African migrants and service providers about how to improve access to mental healthcare services for African migrants in South Australia. The study employed a qualitative design using one-on-one interviews with 20 African migrants and 10 service providers through Zoom or WhatsApp video calls to collect the data. The access to healthcare framework was used to guide data conceptualisation, data analysis and discussion of the findings. Data analysis followed five steps of qualitative data analysis introduced by Ritchie and Spencer. The findings showed several areas that needed improvement to enhance access to services. These areas were grouped into four key themes as follows (1) education on mental illness; (2) understanding the influence of culture on understanding both mental illness and access to mental health services; (3) approachability of the services through dissemination of information within African communities about availability of and procedure to access the services; (4) acceptability of the services through culturally appropriate service delivery, taking into consideration African cultural and religious values in the services, involvement of Africans as services providers, and the use of non-stigmatising terms instead of “mental health problem”. The findings indicate the need for programs for African communities to enhance their knowledge of mental health issues and improve their access to mental healthcare services. Future studies investigating what needs to be done by government and non-governmental institutions to improve access to mental healthcare services among African migrants are recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100058
Number of pages9
JournalSSM - Mental Health
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • African migrants
  • Australia
  • Mental health services
  • Mental illness
  • Perspectives
  • Services providers


Dive into the research topics of 'Strategies to improve access to mental health services: Perspectives of African migrants and service providers in South Australia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this